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South Dakota State University Developing Drought Tolerant Wheat
Tuesday, 2013/04/30 | 21:42:45

A team of scientists from South Dakota State University (SDSU) is developing drought and heat tolerant wheat varieties using germplasm from Alexandria University in Egypt. The team led by SDSU Assistant Professor Jai Rohila, seeks to discover the genes for drought and heat tolerance and use them to prepare South Dakota wheat for the dry and hot years. Rohila's team analyzed the genetic makeup of the wheat from Egyptian and compared it to South Dakota wheat, and they have identified 96 proteins scattered throughout the plant's cells. According to Rohila, these proteins are "differentially expressed in the drought tolerant wheat", and they need to determine the fitness of individual wheat cells.

 

Chloroplasts of South Dakota wheat disintegrate in drought and heat, and the SDSU team will examine the proteins that act within the chloroplast cells in the Egyptian germplasm, and try to transfer the characteristics to those cells in South Dakota wheat.

 

Read more from the news release available at: http://www.sdstate.edu/news/articles/sdsu-works-toward-developing-drought-tolerant-wheat.cfm.

 

Fig: South Dakota State University Assistant Professor Jai Rohila examines plants in the petri dish that have been regenerated from genetically transformed wheat cells.

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