Advertisement

Genetically Modified Crops with Drought Tolerance: Achievements, Challenges, and Perspectives

  • Chanjuan Liang
Chapter

Abstract

Drought stress is a major cause of reduction in crop yield. In the past 10 years, global food insecurity has been aggravated by human population growth, environmental deterioration, and climate change. Hence, developing drought-tolerant crops by modern biotechnology may contribute to global food security because drought-tolerant crops may become a factor to maintain plant growth and productivity, and to increase the area of arable land worldwide. Recently, studies have started to bear fruit on the molecular mechanisms of drought stress responses and, in parallel, genetically modified crops (GM crops) with drought tolerance have also shown promising results that can be ultimately applied to agriculture. However, broad adoption of GM crops, including crops with drought tolerance, will depend on adequate safety assessment and related public acceptance. Thus, a food and environmental safety assessment is generally required by different jurisdictions prior to introducing GM crops with drought tolerance to the market. Although worldwide harmonized approaches are currently provided, risk assessors still face challenges to apply the comparative approach to assess food and environmental safety of GM crops with drought tolerance. In this chapter, we discuss current developments in the field of crops with drought tolerance as well as issues concerning the food and environmental safety assessment of these crops, including achievements, challenges, and perspectives.

Keywords

Genetically modified crops Drought tolerance Biotechnology Crop breeding Food safety assessment Environmental safety assessment 

References

  1. 1.
    Andow DA, Zwahlen C (2006) Assessing environmental risks of transgenic plants. Ecol Lett 9:196–214CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bakhsh A, Hussain T (2015) Engineering crop plants against abiotic stress: current achievements and prospects. Emirates J Food Agri 27:24–39Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Barker T, Campos H, Cooper M, Dolan D, Edmeades G, Habben J, Schussler J, Wright D, Zinselmeier C (2005) Improving drought tolerance in maize. Plant Breed Rev 25:173–253Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bartsch D (2009) Response to Wilkinson & Tepfer’s Fitness and beyond: preparing for the arrival of GM crops with ecologically important novel characters. Environ Biosaf Res 8:17–18CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    BCH (2011) Guidance on risk assessment of living modified organisms. Risk assessment of living modified plants with tolerance to abiotic stress. http://bch.cbd.int/onlineconferences/guidancedoc_ra_abioticstress.shtml
  6. 6.
    Beckie H, Harker K, Hall L, Warwick S, Légère A, Sikkema P, Clayton G, Thomas A, Leeson J, Séguin-Swartz G (2006) A decade of herbicide-resistant crops in Canada. Can J Plant Sci 86:1243–1264CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Beckie HJ, Owen MD (2007) Herbicide-resistant crops as weeds in North America. CAB Rev: Perspect Agri Vet Sci Nutr Nat Resour 44:1–22Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Bhatnagar-Mathur P, Vadez V, Sharma KK (2008) Transgenic approaches for abiotic stress tolerance in plants: retrospect and prospects. Plant Cell Rep 27:411–424CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Birch ANE, Griffiths BS, Caul S, Thompson J, Heckmann LH, Krogh PH, Cortet J (2007) The role of laboratory, glasshouse and field scale experiments in understanding the interactions between genetically modified crops and soil ecosystems: a review of the ECOGEN project. Pedobiologia 51:251–260CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Brune PD, Culler AH, Ridley WP, Walker K (2013) Safety of GM crops: compositional analysis. J Agric Food Chem 61:8243–8247CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Budak H, Kantar M, Kurtoglu KY (2013) Drought tolerance in modern and wild wheat. Sci World J 2013:548246CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Canadian-Government (2012) Food and drug regulations (current to June 27, 2012) Consolidated regulations of Canada (C.R.C.), Chapter 870. Ministry of Justice, OttawaGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Castiglioni P, Warner D, Bensen RJ, Anstrom DC, Harrison J, Stoecker M, Abad M, Kumar G, Salvador S, D’Ordine R (2008) Bacterial RNA chaperones confer abiotic stress tolerance in plants and improved grain yield in maize under water-limited conditions. Plant Physiol 147:446–455CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Chan ZL, Bigelow PJ, Loescher W, Grumet R (2012) Comparison of salt stress resistance genes in transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana indicates that extent of transcriptomic change may not predict secondary phenotypic or fitness effects. Plant Biotechnol J 10:284–300CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Chandler S, Dunwell JM (2008) Gene flow, risk assessment and the environmental release of transgenic plants. Crit Rev Plant Sci 27:25–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Chaves MM, Maroco JP, Pereira JS (2003) Understanding plant responses to drought-from genes to the whole plant. Funct Plant Biol 30:239–264CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Clement M, Lambert A, Herouart D, Boncompagni E (2008) Identification of new up-regulated genes under drought stress in soybean nodules. Gene 426:15–22CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Cominelli E, Conti L, Tonelli C, Galbiati M (2013) Challenges and perspectives to improve crop drought and salinity tolerance. New Biotech 30:355–361CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Conner AJ, Glare TR, Nap JP (2003) The release of genetically modified crops into the environment. Plant J 33:19–46CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Costa TEMM, Dias APM, Scheidegger ÉMD, Marin VA (2011) Risk assessment of genetically modified organisms. Ciência & Saúde Coletiva 16:327–336CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Dale PJ, Clarke B, Fontes EMG (2002) Potential for the environmental impact of transgenic crops. Nat Biotechnol 20:567–574CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    de Jong TJ, Rong J (2013) Crop to wild gene flow: does more sophisticated research provide better risk assessment? Environ Sci Policy 27:135–140CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    de Paiva Rolla AA, Carvalho JdFC, Fuganti-Pagliarini R, Engels C, Do Rio A, Marin SRR, de Oliveira MCN, Beneventi MA, Marcelino-Guimaraes FC, Farias JRB (2014) Phenotyping soybean plants transformed with rd29A: AtDREB1A for drought tolerance in the greenhouse and field. Transgenic Res 23:75–87CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Deikman J, Petracek M, Heard JE (2012) Drought tolerance through biotechnology: improving translation from the laboratory to farmers’ fields. Curr Opin Biotechnol 23:243–250CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Dogan E, Kirnak H, Copur O (2007) Deficit irrigations during soybean reproductive stages and CROPGRO-soybean simulations under semi-arid climatic conditions. Field Crops Res 103:154–159CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    dos Reis SP, Lima AM, de Souza CRB (2012) Recent molecular advances on downstream plant responses to abiotic stress. Int J Mol Sci 13:8628–8647CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    EC (2013) Commission implementing regulation (EU) No 503/2013 of 3 April 2013 on applications for authorisation of genetically modified food and feed in accordance with regulation (EC) No 1829/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council and amending Commission Regulations (EC) No 641/2004 and (EC) No 1981/2006. Official J Eur Union 8.6.2013, No L 157/1Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    EFSA (2010) Guidance on the environmental risk assessment of genetically modified plants. EFSA J 8:1879 (111 pp)Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    EFSA (2011) Guidance document for the risk assessment of genetically modified plants and derived food and feed by the scientific panel on genetically modified organisms (GMO)—including draft document updated in 2008. EFSA J 9:37Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    ESFA (2004) Opinion of the scientific panel on genetically modified organisms on the use of antibiotic resistance genes as marker genes in genetically modified plants. ESFA J (http://www.efsa.europa.eu/cs/BlobServer/Scientific_Opinion/opinion_gmo_05_en1,2.pdf?ssbinary=true) 48, 1–18
  31. 31.
    Fang Y, Xiong L (2015) General mechanisms of drought response and their application in drought resistance improvement in plants. Cell Mol Life Sci 72:673–689CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    FAO U (2009) World summit on food security. Food and agriculture organization of the United Nations RomeGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    FAO/WHO (1996) Biotechnology and food safety. Report of a joint FAO/ WHO consultation, Rome, Italy. FAO Food and nutrition paper 61, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, Rome, ftp://ftp.fao.org/es/esn/food/biotechnology.pdfGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    FDA (1992) Statement of policy—foods derived from new plant varieties. Fed Reg 57:22984–23005Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    FDA (1997) Consultation procedures under FDA’s 1992 statement of policy—foods derived from new plant varieties. Food and Drug Administration, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Golldack D, Li C, Mohan H, Probst N (2014) Tolerance to drought and salt stress in plants: unraveling the signaling networks. Front Plant Sci 5Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    Group WB (2015) Rapid, climate-informed development needed to keep climate change from pushing more than 100 million people into poverty by 2030Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Hadiarto T, Tran L-SP (2011) Progress studies of drought-responsive genes in rice. Plant Cell Rep 30:297–310CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Halford NG, Hudson E, Gimson A, Weightman R, Shewry PR, Tompkins S (2014) Safety assessment of genetically modified plants with deliberately altered composition. Plant Biotechnol J 12:651–654CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Hartman Y, Hooftman DAP, Uwimana B, van de Wiel CCM, Smulders MJM, Visser RGF, van Tienderen PH (2012) Genomic regions in crop-wild hybrids of lettuce are affected differently in different environments: implications for crop breeding. Evol Appl 5:629–640CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    Hu H, Dai M, Yao J, Xiao B, Li X, Zhang Q, Xiong L (2006) Overexpressing a NAM, ATAF, and CUC (NAC) transcription factor enhances drought resistance and salt tolerance in rice. Proc Natl Acad Sci 103:12987–12992CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Hu H, Xiong L (2014) Genetic engineering and breeding of drought-resistant crops. Annu Rev Plant Biol 65:715–741CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    Hussain SS, Kayani MA, Amjad M (2011) Transcription factors as tools to engineer enhanced drought stress tolerance in plants. Biotechnol Prog 27:297–306CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Hussain SS, Raza H, Afzal I, Kayani MA (2012) Transgenic plants for abiotic stress tolerance: current status. Arch Agron Soil Sci 58:693–721CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    Jeong JS, Kim YS, Baek KH, Jung H, Ha S-H, Do Choi Y, Kim M, Reuzeau C, Kim J-K (2010) Root-specific expression of OsNAC10 improves drought tolerance and grain yield in rice under field drought conditions. Plant Physiol 153:185–197CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  46. 46.
    Jeong JS, Kim YS, Redillas MC, Jang G, Jung H, Bang SW, Choi YD, Ha SH, Reuzeau C, Kim JK (2013) OsNAC5 overexpression enlarges root diameter in rice plants leading to enhanced drought tolerance and increased grain yield in the field. Plant Biotechnol J 11:101–114CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    Kim T-H (2014) Mechanism of ABA signal transduction: agricultural highlights for improving drought tolerance. J Plant Biol 57:1–8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. 48.
    Kok EJ, Kuiper HA (2003) Comparative safety assessment for biotech crops. Trends Biotechnol 21:439–444CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  49. 49.
    Kok EJ, Keijer J, Kleter GA, Kuiper HA (2008) Comparative safety assessment of plant-derived foods. Regul Toxicol Pharmacol 50:98–113CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  50. 50.
    Krasensky J, Jonak C (2012) Drought, salt, and temperature stress-induced metabolic rearrangements and regulatory networks. J Exp Bot 63:1593–1608CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  51. 51.
    Kudoyarova GR, Kholodova VP, Veselov DS (2013) Current state of the problem of water relations in plants under water deficit. Russ J Plant Physiol 60:165–175CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. 52.
    Kuiper H, Kleter G, Noteborn H, Kok E (2001) Assessment of the food safety issues related to genetically modified foods. Plant J 27:503–528CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  53. 53.
    Lawlor DW (2013) Genetic engineering to improve plant performance under drought: physiological evaluation of achievements, limitations, and possibilities. J Exp Bot 64:83–108CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  54. 54.
    Leprince O, Buitink J (2015) Introduction to desiccation biology: from old borders to new frontiers. Planta 242:369–378CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  55. 55.
    Li Y, Zhang J, Zhang J, Hao L, Hua J, Duan L, Zhang M, Li Z (2013) Expression of an Arabidopsis molybdenum cofactor sulphurase gene in soybean enhances drought tolerance and increases yield under field conditions. Plant Biotechnol J 11:747–758CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  56. 56.
    Liang C, Prins TW, van de Wiel CCM, Kok EJ (2014) Safety aspects of genetically modified crops with abiotic stress tolerance. Trends Food Sci Technol 40:115–122CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. 57.
    Magyar-Tabori K, Mendler-Drienyovszki N, Dobranszki J (2011) Models and tools for studying drought stress responses in peas. Omics-a J Integr Biol 15:829–838CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. 58.
    Marshall A et al (2012) Tackling drought stress: receptor-like kinases present new approaches. Plant Cell 24:2262–2278CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  59. 59.
    Mizoi J, Shinozaki K, Yamaguchi-Shinozaki K (2012) AP2/ERF family transcription factors in plant abiotic stress responses. Biochim et Biophys Acta-Gene Regul Mech 1819:86–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. 60.
    Monsanto-Company (2009) Petition for the determination of non-regulated status for MON 87460, www.aphis.usda.gov/biotechnology/not_reg.html
  61. 61.
    Nickson TE (2008) Planning environmental risk assessment for genetically modified crops: problem formulation for stress-tolerant crops. Plant Physiol 147:494–502CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  62. 62.
    OECD (1996) Food safety evaluation. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris, p 74Google Scholar
  63. 63.
    OGTR (2009) Risk assessment and risk management plan for DIR 095: limited and controlled release of sugarcane genetically modified for altered plant growth, enhanced drought tolerance, enhanced nitrogen use efficiency, altered sucrose accumulation, and improved cellulosic ethanol production from sugarcane biomassGoogle Scholar
  64. 64.
    Oh S-J, Kim YS, Kwon C-W, Park HK, Jeong JS, Kim J-K (2009) Overexpression of the transcription factor AP37 in rice improves grain yield under drought conditions. Plant Physiol 150:1368–1379CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  65. 65.
    Pasapula V, Shen G, Kuppu S, Paez-Valencia J, Mendoza M, Hou P, Chen J, Qiu X, Zhu L, Zhang X (2011) Expression of an Arabidopsis vacuolar H + -pyrophosphatase gene (AVP1) in cotton improves drought-and salt tolerance and increases fibre yield in the field conditions. Plant Biotechnol J 9:88–99CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  66. 66.
    Qin H, Gu Q, Zhang J, Sun L, Kuppu S, Zhang Y, Burow M, Payton P, Blumwald E, Zhang H (2011) Regulated expression of an isopentenyltransferase gene (IPT) in peanut significantly improves drought tolerance and increases yield under field conditions. Plant Cell Physiol 52:1904–1914CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  67. 67.
    Redillas MC, Jeong JS, Kim YS, Jung H, Bang SW, Choi YD, Ha SH, Reuzeau C, Kim JK (2012) The overexpression of OsNAC9 alters the root architecture of rice plants enhancing drought resistance and grain yield under field conditions. Plant Biotechnol J 10:792–805CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  68. 68.
    Reguera M, Peleg Z, Blumwald E (2012) Targeting, metabolic pathways for genetic engineering abiotic stress-tolerance in crops. Biochim et Biophys Acta-Gene Regul Mech 1819:186–194CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. 69.
    Saad ASI, Li X, Li H-P, Huang T, Gao C-S, Guo M-W, Cheng W, Zhao G-Y, Liao Y-C (2013) A rice stress-responsive NAC gene enhances tolerance of transgenic wheat to drought and salt stresses. Plant Sci 203:33–40CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  70. 70.
    Sammons B, Whitsel J, Stork LG, Reeves W, Horak M (2014) Characterization of drought-tolerant maize MON 87460 for use in environmental risk assessment. Crop Sci 54:719–729CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. 71.
    Sharma P, Singh AK, Singh BP, Gaur SN, Arora N (2011) Allergenicity assessment of Osmotin, a pathogenesis-related protein, used for transgenic crops. J Agric Food Chem 59:9990–9995CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  72. 72.
    Shinozaki K, Yamaguchi-Shinozaki K (2007) Gene networks involved in drought stress response and tolerance. J Exp Bot 58:221–227CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  73. 73.
    Singh AK, Singh BP, Prasad G, Gaur SN, Arora N (2008) Safety assessment of bacterial choline oxidase protein introduced in transgenic crops for tolerance against abiotic stress. J Agric Food Chem 56:12099–12104CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  74. 74.
    Stein AJ, Rodríguez-Cerezo E (2009) The global pipeline of new GM crops. Implications of asynchronous approval for international trade. European Commission, Joint Research CentreGoogle Scholar
  75. 75.
    Strauss SH (2003) Genomics, genetic engineering, and domestication of crops. Science 300:61CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  76. 76.
    Tardieu F (2012) Any trait or trait-related allele can confer drought tolerance: just design the right drought scenario. J Exp Bot 63:25–31CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  77. 77.
    Thao NP, Tran LSP (2012) Potentials toward genetic engineering of drought-tolerant soybean. Crit Rev Biotechnol 32:349–362CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  78. 78.
    Todaka D, Shinozaki K, Yamaguchi-Shinozaki K (2015) Recent advances in the dissection of drought-stress regulatory networks and strategies for development of drought-tolerant transgenic rice plants. Front Plant Sci 6Google Scholar
  79. 79.
    Trenberth KE, Dai A, van der Schrier G, Jones PD, Barichivich J, Briffa KR, Sheffield J (2014) Global warming and changes in drought. Nat Clim Change 4:17–22CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. 80.
    Uwimana B, Smulders MJM, Hooftman DAP, Hartman Y, van Tienderen PH, Jansen J, McHale LK, Michelmore RW, Visser RGF, van de Wiel CCM (2012) Crop to wild introgression in lettuce: following the fate of crop genome segments in backcross populations. doi  10.1186/1471-2229-12-43. BMC Plant Biol 12
  81. 81.
    Velkov VV, Medvinsky AB, Sokolov MS, Marchenko AI (2005) Will transgenic plants adversely affect the environment? J Biosci 30:515–548CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  82. 82.
    Warwick SI, Beckie HJ, Hall LM (2009): Gene flow, invasiveness, and ecological impact of genetically modified crops. In: Schlichting CD, Mousseau TA (eds), Year in evolutionary biology 2009. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, pp 72–99Google Scholar
  83. 83.
    Woodward A, Smith KR, Campbell-Lendrum D, Chadee DD, Honda Y, Liu Q, Olwoch J, Revich B, Sauerborn R, Chafe Z (2014) Climate change and health: on the latest IPCC report. The Lancet 383:1185–1189CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. 84.
    Xiao B, Chen X, Xiang C, Tang N, Zhang Q, Xiong L (2009) Evaluation of seven function-known candidate genes for their effects on improving drought resistance of transgenic rice under field conditions. Mol Plant 2:73–83CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  85. 85.
    Yu L, Chen X, Wang Z, Wang S, Wang Y, Zhu Q, Li S, Xiang C (2013) Arabidopsis enhanced drought tolerance1/HOMEODOMAIN GLABROUS11 confers drought tolerance in transgenic rice without yield penalty. Plant Physiol 162:1378–1391CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  86. 86.
    Zhang X, Lu G, Long W, Zou X, Li F, Nishio T (2014) Recent progress in drought and salt tolerance studies in Brassica crops. Breed Sci 64:60–73CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Anaerobic Biotechnology, School of Environmental and Civil EngineeringJiangnan UniversityWuxiChina

Personalised recommendations