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Genetic enrichment of cereal crops via alien gene transfer: New challenges

Genetic enrichment of cereal crops via alien gene transfer: New challenges Genetic improvement of crops has traditionally been achieved through sexual hybridization between related species, which has resulted in numerous cultivars with high yields and superior agronomic performance. Conventional plant breeding, sometimes combined with classical cytogenetic techniques, continues to be the main method of cereal crop improvement. More recently, through the introduction of new tools of biotechnology, crossing barriers have been overcome, and genes from unrelated sources have become available to be introduced asexually into plants. Cereal crops were initially difficult to genetically engineer, mainly due to their recalcitrance to in vitro regeneration and their resistance to Agrobacterium infection. Systematic screening of cultivars and explant tissues for regeneration potential, development of various DNA delivery methods and optimization of gene expression cassettes have produced transformation protocols for the major cereals, although some elite cultivars still remain recalcitrant to transformation. Most of the transgenic cereals developed for commercial purpose exhibit herbicide and/or insect resistance; traits that are often controlled by a single gene. In recent years, more complex traits, such as dough functionality in wheat and nutritional quality of rice have been improved by the use of biotechnology. The current challenges for genetic engineering of plants will be to understand and control factors causing transgene silencing, instability and rearrangement, which are often seen in transgenic plants and highly undesirable in lines to be used for crop development. Further improvement of current cereal cultivars is expected to benefit greatly from information emerging from the areas of genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture Springer Journals

Genetic enrichment of cereal crops via alien gene transfer: New challenges

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References (259)

Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2001 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Life Sciences; Plant Sciences; Plant Physiology
ISSN
0167-6857
eISSN
1573-5044
DOI
10.1023/A:1010633510352
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Genetic improvement of crops has traditionally been achieved through sexual hybridization between related species, which has resulted in numerous cultivars with high yields and superior agronomic performance. Conventional plant breeding, sometimes combined with classical cytogenetic techniques, continues to be the main method of cereal crop improvement. More recently, through the introduction of new tools of biotechnology, crossing barriers have been overcome, and genes from unrelated sources have become available to be introduced asexually into plants. Cereal crops were initially difficult to genetically engineer, mainly due to their recalcitrance to in vitro regeneration and their resistance to Agrobacterium infection. Systematic screening of cultivars and explant tissues for regeneration potential, development of various DNA delivery methods and optimization of gene expression cassettes have produced transformation protocols for the major cereals, although some elite cultivars still remain recalcitrant to transformation. Most of the transgenic cereals developed for commercial purpose exhibit herbicide and/or insect resistance; traits that are often controlled by a single gene. In recent years, more complex traits, such as dough functionality in wheat and nutritional quality of rice have been improved by the use of biotechnology. The current challenges for genetic engineering of plants will be to understand and control factors causing transgene silencing, instability and rearrangement, which are often seen in transgenic plants and highly undesirable in lines to be used for crop development. Further improvement of current cereal cultivars is expected to benefit greatly from information emerging from the areas of genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics.

Journal

Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ CultureSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 3, 2004

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