Engineering herbicide-resistant watermelon variety through CRISPR/Cas9-mediated base-editing
Planted to two million ha farmland and yielding more than 70 million tons per year, watermelon dominates the fruit market in China. However, with a low planting density and short canopy, field watermelon is severely threatened by weeds. Currently, only five herbicides, providing poor or no control on broadleaved weeds, are registered for watermelon weed control in China; therefore, technical solutions for broadleaved weed control are greatly needed by watermelon growers (Grey et al. 2000). Although this issue could be well addressed by developing herbicide-resistant watermelon, no such varieties were commercialized, largely due to the difficulties to generate herbicide-resistant watermelon germplasm via traditional breeding.
Precise genome editing technologies, especially CRISPR/Cas9, offer revolutionary solutions to create herbicide-resistant germplasm. By integrating a DNA template that contains herbicide-resistant mutations into the DNA double strand break (DSB) caused by...
KeywordsBase-editing Herbicide-resistant watermelon Transgene-free
This work was supported by grants from the National Key R&D Program of China (2018YFD010062), Beijing science & technology program (D171100007617001), Beijing Academy of Agricultural and Forestry Sciences (KJCX20180427), National Natural Science Foundation of China (31701943, 31471785), the Ministry of Agriculture of China (CARS-26), Beijing Scholar Program (BSP026), BaGui Scholar Program.
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Conflict of interest
A patent application related to the findings of this report was filed to the patent office in Beijing, and key authors of this report were listed as inventors.
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