Rice Biotechnology: Progress and Prospects

  • Gary H. Toenniessen


Considerable progress has been made in the development of cellular biology and molecular genetic techniques that can be applied to the genetic improvement of rice. Tissue culture techniques such as anther culture, embryo rescue, and use of somaclonal variants have contributed to the release of new rice varieties. These technologies are of proven benefit to rice breeding and through research are becoming applicable to a broader range of rice cultivars and breeding objectives. Most molecular genetic techniques are still at an early stage of development but progress has been more rapid with rice than any other cereal. Species specific probes and genetic maps of rice have been produced and increasingly are being applied in breeding. Further development of these tools into a map-based system for cloning rice genes is underway. Regeneration of fertile plants from protoplasts has been achieved for both japonica and indica rice. This is the basis of rice genetic transformation systems that now exist in several laboratories. Transgenic rice plants containing alien marker genes are scheduled to be field tested this year. Several experiments are underway to introduce potentially useful cloned genes into rice. Numerous other research projects are aimed at identifying, constructing and cloning a wide variety of genes from plants, microbes and animals which might instill useful traits if introduced into the rice genome. This paper reviews the progress to date and describes several promising research projects.


Anther Culture Bacterial Blight Transgenic Rice Plant Indica Rice RFLP Marker 
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

© Society of Chemical Industry 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gary H. Toenniessen
    • 1
  1. 1.Rockefeller FoundationNew YorkUSA

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