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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Food Quality Laboratory » Research » Research Project #442838

Research Project: Improvement of American Fruit and Vegetable Quality by Genome Editing

Location: Food Quality Laboratory

Project Number: 8042-43000-016-009-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jul 18, 2022
End Date: Jun 17, 2027

More than a quarter of fruits and vegetables are wasted because of their deteriorated quality and reduced shelf-life after harvest. The objective is to perform genome editing and transgenic studies of selected genes involved in fruit quality in fruit and vegetable crops, including strawberry, lettuce and tomato. This collaborative study will facilitate crop improvement with better quality and speed up the delivery of the research results.

1. Characterize candidate genes for controlling fruit quality and shelf-life by bioinformatics analysis, gene expression studies and transient transformation of selected genes. 2. Based on the results from approach 1, select genes with best effect for stable transformation by making the constructs, and tissue culture, transformation. In particular, genome editing system such as CRISPA will be utilized because the genome edited crops are allowed commercial use in many countries including USA. 3. Analyze the quality traits of transgenic plants, such as total soluble solids, phenolics, vitamins and minerals, decay incidence, shelf-life, etc.