Regulated expression of an isopentenyltransferase gene (IPT) in peanut significantly improves drought tolerance and increases yield under field conditions

Hua Qin, Qiang Gu, Junling Zhang, Li Sun, Sundaram Kuppu, Yizheng Zhang, Mark Burow, Paxton Payton, Eduardo Blumwald, Hong Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

106 Scopus citations

Abstract

Isopentenyltransferase (IPT) is a critical enzyme in the cytokinin biosynthetic pathway. The expression of IPT under the control of a maturation-and stress-induced promoter was shown to delay stress-induced plant senescence that resulted in an enhanced drought tolerance in both monocot and dicot plants. This report extends the earlier findings in tobacco and rice to peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.), an important oil crop and protein source. Regulated expression of IPT in peanut significantly improved drought tolerance in both laboratory and field conditions. Transgenic peanut plants maintained higher photosynthetic rates, higher stomatal conductance and higher transpiration than wild-type control plants under reduced irrigation conditions. More importantly, transgenic peanut plants produced significantly higher yields than wild-type control plants in the field, indicating a great potential for the development of crops with improved performance and yield in water-limited areas of the world.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1904-1914
Number of pages11
JournalPlant and Cell Physiology
Volume52
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2011

Keywords

  • Crop improvement
  • Drought resistance
  • Isopentenyltransferase
  • P
  • Peanut
  • Transgenic plants

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