Journal article

Metabolic engineering of bread wheat improves grain iron concentration and bioavailability

Jesse T Beasley, Julien P Bonneau, Jose T Sanchez-Palacios, Laura T Moreno-Moyano, Damien L Callahan, Elad Tako, Raymond P Glahn, Enzo Lombi, Alexander AT Johnson

Plant Biotechnology Journal | WILEY | Published : 2019


Bread wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) is cultivated on more land than any other crop and produces a fifth of the calories consumed by humans. Wheat endosperm is rich in starch yet contains low concentrations of dietary iron (Fe) and zinc (Zn). Biofortification is a micronutrient intervention aimed at increasing the density and bioavailability of essential vitamins and minerals in staple crops; Fe biofortification of wheat has proved challenging. In this study we employed constitutive expression (CE) of the rice (Oryza sativa L.) nicotianamine synthase 2 (OsNAS2) gene in bread wheat to up-regulate biosynthesis of two low molecular weight metal chelators - nicotianamine (NA) and 2'-deoxymugineic ..

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Funding Acknowledgements

This work was supported by grants from the HarvestPlus Challenge program to A.A.T.J. We thank Bettina Berger at The Plant Accelerator (Adelaide, Australia), Chris Ryan at the Australian Synchrotron (Victoria, Australia) and Adrian Cox, Leigh Smith, Shahajahan Miyan and Ed Barrett-Lennard at the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development Western Australia (Western Australia, Australia) for excellent technical assistance related to the phenotyping, XFM and field trial components of our research. We also thank Lorraine Carruthers, Margie Pallotta, Jan Nield, Mary Bodis, Yongpei Chang and Shree Giri for invaluable help provided throughout the project. Analysis of NA and DMA was carried out at Metabolomics Australia (School of BioSciences, The University of Melbourne, Australia), an NCRIS initiative under Bioplatforms Australia Pty Ltd.