Journal Article

Engineering greater aluminium resistance in wheat by over-expressing <i>TaALMT1</i>

Jorge F. Pereira, Gaofeng Zhou, Emmanuel Delhaize, Terese Richardson, Meixue Zhou and Peter R. Ryan

in Annals of Botany

Published on behalf of The Annals of Botany Company

Volume 106, issue 1, pages 205-214
Published in print July 2010 | ISSN: 0305-7364
Published online March 2010 | e-ISSN: 1095-8290 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aob/mcq058
Engineering greater aluminium resistance in wheat by over-expressing TaALMT1

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  • Ecology and Conservation
  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Plant Sciences and Forestry

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Background and Aims

Expected increases in world population will continue to make demands on agricultural productivity and food supply. These challenges will only be met by increasing the land under cultivation and by improving the yields obtained on existing farms. Genetic engineering can target key traits to improve crop yields and to increase production on marginal soils. Soil acidity is a major abiotic stress that limits plant production worldwide. The goal of this study was to enhance the acid soil tolerance of wheat by increasing its resistance to Al3+ toxicity.

Methods

Particle bombardment was used to transform wheat with TaALMT1, the Al3+ resistance gene from wheat, using the maize ubiquitin promoter to drive expression. TaALMT1 expression, malate efflux and Al3+ resistance were measured in the T1 and T2 lines and compared with the parental line and an Al3+-resistant reference genotype, ET8.

Key Results

Nine T2 lines showed increased TaALMT1 expression, malate efflux and Al3+ resistance when compared with untransformed controls and null segregant lines. Some T2 lines displayed greater Al3+ resistance than ET8 in both hydroponic and soil experiments.

Conclusions

The Al3+ resistance of wheat was increased by enhancing TaALMT1 expression with biotechnology. This is the first report of a major food crop being stably transformed for greater Al3+ resistance. Transgenic strategies provide options for increasing food supply on acid soils.

Keywords: Acid soil; aluminium resistance; TaALMT1 gene; transgenic wheat; Triticum aestivum; aluminum

Journal Article.  6691 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Ecology and Conservation ; Evolutionary Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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