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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Molecular Plant Pathology Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #312240

Research Project: Molecular Technology for Developing Durable Pest and Pathogen Resistance in Sugar Beet

Location: Molecular Plant Pathology Laboratory

Title: Phenotypic performance of transgenic potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) plants with pyramided rice cystatin genes (OCI and OCII)

Author
item CINGEL, ALEKSANDAR - University Of Belgrade
item SAVIC, JELENA - University Of Belgrade
item COSIC, TATJANA - University Of Belgrade
item RASPOR, MARTIN - University Of Belgrade
item GHALAWENJI, NABIL - University Of Belgrade
item Smigocki, Anna
item NINKOVIC, SLAVICA - University Of Belgrade

Submitted to: Archives of Biological Sciences, Belgrade
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/27/2014
Publication Date: 5/29/2015
Citation: Cingel, A., Savic, J., Cosic, T., Raspor, M., Ghalawenji, N., Smigocki, A.C., Ninkovic, S. 2014. Phenotypic performance of transgenic potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) plants with pyramided rice cystatin genes (OCI and OCII). Archives of Biological Sciences, Belgrade. DOI: 10.2298/ABS141201058C.

Interpretive Summary: Potato cultivars with excellent growth, yield, cooking and nutritional quality are generally highly susceptible to attack by herbivours insect pests, particularly the Colorado potato beetle (CPB). To improve insect resistance in potato, several potato varieties were modified with beneficial insect resistance traits (OCI and OCII genes) isolated from rice. To assess the overall effect of the introduced foreign traits on plant performance, growth of these plants was evaluated under laboratory, greenhouse and field conditions in Serbia. A normal growth pattern was observed with all three varieties of genetically modified plants when they were grown in the laboratory and greenhouse. In the field environment, eight of the nine evaluated modified lines were similar to the unaltered control plants in their general phenotypic appearance. Yield parameters such as tuber number and tuber weight for these phenotypically normal plants were also comparable to the controls. Field growth of one of the nine analyzed plants was slightly reduced and plants exhibited atypical leaf morphology and no flower formation; however, no significant decrease in tuber yield was recorded. These results indicate that pairing beneficial genes in a single plant does not disturb the parental line attributes and could be suitable for improving agronomical traits in potato. Scientists will use this information to develop new varieties of plants that are more resistant to insects.

Technical Abstract: The evaluation of transgenic plants commonly carried out under controlled conditions in culture rooms and greenhouses can give valuable information about the influence of introduced genes on transgenic plant phenotype. However, an overall assessment of plant performance can only be made by testing transgenic plants in the field environment. Thus, effects of pyramided rice cystatin genes OCI and OCII on morphological parameters of transgenic potato cv. Desiree, Dragacevka and Jelica lines were compared under in vitro, greenhouse and field conditions in Serbia. All analyzed OC co-expressing transgenic lines exhibited normal phenotype, both in vitro and in greenhouse conditions. In the field environment, eight of nine OCI/OCII lines were similar to the wild-type control plants in their general phenotypic appearance. Yield parameters such as tuber number and tuber weight for these phenotypically normal OCI/OCII lines were also comparable to the controls. Only plants of transgenic cv. Jelica line 4 exhibited slightly reduced growth, atypical leaf morphology and, contrary to the plants of other transgenic lines and untransformed controls, failed to flower. However, despite the phenotypic and developmental changes under field conditions, OCI/OCII Jelica line 4 did not exhibit a significant decrease in tuber yield. Stacking of OCI and OCII genes preserves important attributes of the parental lines, confirming that this approach could be suitable for improving agronomical traits in potato.