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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Davis, California » Crops Pathology and Genetics Research » Research » Research Project #435933

Research Project: Improvement of Postharvest Performance of Ornamentals Using Molecular Genetic Approaches

Location: Crops Pathology and Genetics Research

Project Number: 2032-21000-025-000-D
Project Type: In-House Appropriated

Start Date: Dec 6, 2018
End Date: Mar 17, 2020

Objective 1: Determine the impact of conditionally-induced high plant hormone ascisic acid (ABA) production on drought tolerance of ornamentals and the potential for use in management practices to mitigate drought damage. Objective 2: Identify the physiological, biochemical, genetic and molecular bases of drought tolerance using transgenic plants with over-produced plant hormone ABA under stress- and alcohol-inducible systems. Objective 3: Determine molecular processes and the potential to retard floral senescence and enhance vase life in ethylene-insensitive flower senescence using Four o'clock (Mirabilis jalapa) as a model.

Objective 1: Test the strategy of upregulating the key ABA biosynthesis gene, NCED, with a plant-derived stress-inducible promoter pRD29A (cloned from Arabidopsis); use a chemically-induced system (alcohol-inducible promoter, ALC) to up-regulate the expression of NCED in petunia. Objective 2: Biological materials established or collected from Objective 1 will be subjected to either physiological, or biochemical and molecular analysis. Objective 3: Use Four o'clock (Mirabilis jalapa) as a model system for studying the molecular regulation of ethylene insensitive flower senescence. Four o'clock tissues from leaves (young and senescing), stems, roots, whole flowers (no petals) and petals (four stages, before opening, just fully-opened, senescing and wilted) will be harvested.