Metabolic Engineering of Compatible Solute Trehalose for Abiotic Stress Tolerance in Plants

  • Saroj Kumar Sah
  • Gurwinder Kaur
  • Shabir H. WaniEmail author


It is estimated that by 2050 the world population will reach 9.1 billion, but the production of agricultural products is the same. In order to feed the whole population, global agricultural production should be increased by 60–110 %, and to feed the additional 2.3 billion population, 70 % more food should be grown to fulfill the demand. Due to abiotic stresses, agricultural production is lowered, so now abiotic stresses are a foremost area of concern to fulfill the required food demand. The major abiotic stresses which threaten the food security worldwide are high salinity, drought, submerge tolerance, and cold. To produce stress-tolerant crops, genetic engineering of stress-signaling pathway is one of the main goals of agricultural research. In recent years, biotechnologist is trying to develop a new abiotic stress-tolerant variety by engineering a trehalose metabolism in crops which can have a substantial impact on worldwide food production. Trehalose, a nonreducing disaccharide, has tremendous effects in abiotic stress tolerance and metabolic regulation in a wide range of organisms. Trehalose-6-phosphate synthase (TPS and trehalose-6-phosphate phosphatase (TPP are two key enzymes which help in the biosynthesis of plants. Trehalose is an uncommon sugar present in bacteria, fungi, and desiccation-tolerant higher plants and has exceptional capacities to protect biomolecules by stabilizing dry biological membrane and proteins from environmental stress. It has a multiple function and some of them are species specific. Many research groups showed that there is a linkage between trehalose and abiotic stress by conducting different experiments. They introduced trehalose biosynthetic genes to develop stress tolerance line in important crops like rice, tomato, and potato. Here, in this review, we discuss occurrence, characters, chemical and biological characteristics, uses, pathways, and successful examples in crop plants.


Trehalase Activity Trehalose Synthesis Trehalose Accumulation Trehalose Biosynthesis Trehalose Dihydrate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer India 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Saroj Kumar Sah
    • 1
  • Gurwinder Kaur
    • 2
  • Shabir H. Wani
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology and Plant PathologyMississippi State UniversityStarkvilleUSA
  2. 2.School of Agricultural BiotechnologyPunjab Agricultural UniversityLudhianaIndia
  3. 3.Division of Genetics and Plant BreedingSKUAST-KSrinagarIndia

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