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Research article2023Peer reviewedOpen access

Drought tolerance induced by the overexpression of the nuclear rbcL gene in rice

De Oliveira, Joao Augusto Vieira; Vianello, Rosana Pereira; Lanna, Anna Cristina; Dedicova, Beata; Rocha, Dhiovanna Correia; Brondani, Claudio


- The objective of this work was to determine whether the overexpression of the nuclear Rubisco large subunit (rbcL) improves the drought tolerance of the genetically modified (GM) BRSMG Curinga upland rice (Oryza sativa) cultivar. GM and non-genetically modified (NGM) plants of the same cultivar were compared under the two following water treatments: well watered (WW) and water deficit (WD). The performance of the agronomic traits of GM plants, including grain yield, was superior to that of NGM plants in both treatments. By quantitative polymerase chain reaction, GM plants show a significantly higher expression of the rbcL gene in both WW and WD, as well as a larger amount of abscisic acid. With the RNAseq analysis, almost three times more upregulated genes are identified in GM plants in stage 2 after water restriction, indicating a greater protection against water deficit. The higher expression of genes related to the protection of the cellular metabolism and a series of physiological alterations may be involved in the increase in the drought tolerance of GM rice plants overexpressing the rbcL gene.


Oryza sativa; abscisic acid; genetic engineering; quantitative PCR; Rubisco

Published in

Pesquisa Agropecuária Brasileira
2023, Volume: 58, article number: e03181

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Genetics and Breeding
    Agricultural Science

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