Aflatoxin-free transgenic maize using host-induced gene silencing
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Sch Plant Sci, BIO5 Inst
Univ Arizona, USDA, ARS
Univ Arizona, Sch Plant Sci
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherAMER ASSOC ADVANCEMENT SCIENCE
CitationAflatoxin-free transgenic maize using host-induced gene silencing 2017, 3 (3):e1602382 Science Advances
RightsThis is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial license,
Collection InformationThis item from the UA Faculty Publications collection is made available by the University of Arizona with support from the University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions, please contact us at email@example.com.
AbstractAflatoxins, toxic secondary metabolites produced by some Aspergillus species, are a universal agricultural economic problem and a critical health issue. Despite decades of control efforts, aflatoxin contamination is responsible for a global loss of millions of tons of crops each year. We show that host-induced gene silencing is an effective method for eliminating this toxin in transgenic maize. We transformed maize plants with a kernel-specific RNA interference (RNAi) gene cassette targeting the aflC gene, which encodes an enzyme in the Aspergillus aflatoxin biosynthetic pathway. After pathogen infection, aflatoxin could not be detected in kernels from these RNAi transgenic maize plants, while toxin loads reached thousands of parts per billion in nontransgenic control kernels. A comparison of transcripts in developing aflatoxin-free transgenic kernels with those from nontransgenic kernels showed no significant differences between these two groups. These results demonstrate that small interfering RNA molecules can be used to silence aflatoxin biosynthesis in maize, providing an attractive and precise engineering strategy that could also be extended to other crops to improve food security.
NoteOpen Access Journal.
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsBill and Melinda Gates Foundation
CollectionsUA Faculty Publications
- Downregulation of transcription factor aflR in Aspergillus flavus confers reduction to aflatoxin accumulation in transgenic maize with alteration of host plant architecture.
- Authors: Masanga JO, Matheka JM, Omer RA, Ommeh SC, Monda EO, Alakonya AE
- Issue date: 2015 Aug
- RNA interference-based silencing of the alpha-amylase (amy1) gene in Aspergillus flavus decreases fungal growth and aflatoxin production in maize kernels.
- Authors: Gilbert MK, Majumdar R, Rajasekaran K, Chen ZY, Wei Q, Sickler CM, Lebar MD, Cary JW, Frame BR, Wang K
- Issue date: 2018 Jun
- The <i>Aspergillus flavus</i> Spermidine Synthase (<i>spds</i>) Gene, Is Required for Normal Development, Aflatoxin Production, and Pathogenesis During Infection of Maize Kernels.
- Authors: Majumdar R, Lebar M, Mack B, Minocha R, Minocha S, Carter-Wientjes C, Sickler C, Rajasekaran K, Cary JW
- Issue date: 2018
- PR10 expression in maize and its effect on host resistance against Aspergillus flavus infection and aflatoxin production.
- Authors: Chen ZY, Brown RL, Damann KE, Cleveland TE
- Issue date: 2010 Jan
- The Pathogenesis-Related Maize Seed (<i>PRms</i>) Gene Plays a Role in Resistance to <i>Aspergillus flavus</i> Infection and Aflatoxin Contamination.
- Authors: Majumdar R, Rajasekaran K, Sickler C, Lebar M, Musungu BM, Fakhoury AM, Payne GA, Geisler M, Carter-Wientjes C, Wei Q, Bhatnagar D, Cary JW
- Issue date: 2017