Improving drought resistance in barley by transcriptional silencing of genes with suppressor function (IDRIB).

The mechanism of RNA-directed-DNA-methylation should be applied to transcriptionally silence genes with suppressor function for drought resistance and grain size in barley (Hordeum vulgare).


Transcriptional gene silencing is a mechanism inactivating the targeted gene via methylation of its promotor region. Sequence specific methylation will be achieved by stable and transient expression of a hairpin construct directed against promotors of target genes with suppressor function in barley drought resistance.  Drought stress in the terminal phase of barley development leads to severe losses in grain yield. In our previous research we could identify genes involved in drought stress response. The promotor regions of target genes will be transcriptionally inactivated to improve drought resistance in barley. The heritability of this inactivation in the absence of the silencer transgene could be shown in Arabidopsis. Applying this method in barley could lead to a new method of epigenetic gene silencing without genetic modification of the plant.


Principal investigator (PI): Prof. Dr. Thomas Altmann, IPK Gatersleben, Dept. Leader Molecular Genetics

Principal investigator (PI): Dr. Markus Kuhlmann, IPK Gatersleben)

Principal investigator (PI): Prof. Dr. Edgar Peiter, Martin-Luther-University of Halle-Wittenberg Head of Dept. Plant Nutrition

Saatzucht Josef Breun GmbH & Co. KG

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