Controlling this gene boosts plant tolerance to water, salt stress

rice i

Plant Science reports that OsNCED5 gene regulated tolerance to water and salt stress, as well as leaf aging in rice plants. The enzyme 9-cis-epoxycarotenoid dioxygenase (NCED) has been known to affect the production of abscisic acid (ABA) but the molecular mechanisms of NCED in plant development and abiotic stress tolerance are still unknown in rice. Thus, researchers from Hunan Normal University in China explored the rice NCED, OsNCED5.

OsNCED5 was expressed in all tissues tested, and was induced by exposure to salt stress, water stress, and darkness. When the gene was switched off, the mutants exhibited lower ABA concentrations and reduced tolerance to salt and water stress, as well as delay in leaf senescence. On the other hand, plants with overexpressed OsNCED5 exhibited higher levels of ABA, improved tolerance to stresses, and rapid leaf senescence.

Related article:  Healthier white bread could be in stores by 2025, after genes controlling wheat fiber content identified

Based on the findings, OsNCED5 may be used to control development and stress resistance through regulation of ABA production in plants.

Read full, original article: Biotech crop update, July 31, 2019

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