Identification Of Stress Induced Gene In Rice Plant
Rice is the largest consumed grain in the world. It is the main grain featured in the staple diet of over 4 billion people around the world. A large quantity of rice is being destroyed every year due to weather changes. These changes have lead to manipulating genome of the rice grain to create stress-adjusting strains, which can withstand the environmental conditions. Research shows that manipulating certain abscisic acid (ABA) and proteins in the grain can help the strain of rice survive some of the unfavorable weather conditions.
These proteins and acids help in balancing the physiological processes in plants. Gene expression in plants varies from the conditions to which the plant is exposed. Varying conditions, create various responses in the growth of the plant. These environmental stress factors have a high impact on the growth of rice. The main water-stress factors responsible for the loss of rice grain, are flooding, drought, and high salinity in soil. Temperature-stress factors are extreme low and high temperatures.
Several new strains of rice are being constructed through research to combat the environmental stress. For most of South Asia and South East Asia, the most dominant stress factor is flood-prone terrain.
Flooding affects 20 million hectares of land annually. The grain becomes unsalvageable after being submerged in about a week of stagnant water. Flood tolerant stains may have different coping mechanisms, while one may argue that the variety needs to grow quickly above the water, another strain remains under the water level but maintains the energy level by slowing down and transitioning into a passive state while the flooding subsides. The flooded terrain issue led to the identification and creation of a new strain of rice grain named “Swarna Sub1” which can better withstand the swamping. This strain goes into a dormant state when submerged into water, controlling its energy and survives without the appropriate access to sun and oxygen. Typically a flood resistant plant would need a physiological boost, which will allow it to grow taller than the regular rice plant. This will allow for the roots to grow at a higher level, allowing for the necessary gas and light reactions for the plant to cultivate. This gene of the rice plant is growing in popularity and is being planted in over 1.5 million hectares of rice paddies.