AL 08 - Plant Transformation
Laboratory Activities with PlantStress Biotech INCT
Identify in silico promoters responsive to biotic and abiotic stress.
Clone promoters responsive to drought and phytonematodes with activity in different organs (root and leaf).
Validate promoters by transient transformation by biolistics or Agrobacterium rhyzogenes in target plants for in vivo testing of promoters (soybean, cotton and corn).
Validate promoters by stable transformation in target plants for in vivo testing of promoters identified as promising in previous tests (soybeans, cotton and corn).
Organize, maintain and share an in vivo bank of the innovation assets obtained in the project shared by INCT members.
Generate GM soybean, cotton and corn via strategies of overexpression or silencing of plant genes and evaluate the phenotype obtained regarding drought tolerance.
Generate GM soybean and cotton via strategies of overexpression or silencing of plant genes and evaluate the phenotype obtained for resistance to nematodes.
Generate GM soybean, cotton and corn via toxin overexpression strategies and evaluate the phenotype obtained regarding the control of Helicoverpa armigera and Spodoptera frugiperda.
Research efforts in our laboratory have focused on prospecting and characterization of genes involved in plant response to biotic and abiotic stresses. Emphasis: Soybean (Glycine max), Jackbean (Canavalia ensiformis) and Solanum nigrum. Approaches: Gene expression analysis; Gene silencing; Overexpression; Subcellular localization of gene products. For genetic transformation, we use mainly particle bombardment, but we are gaining experience on Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. Embryogenic tissues are used as targets for transformation.
Characterization of soybean genes involved in flood and drought tolerance.
Overexpression of Jaburetox and Soyuretox, urease-derived peptides, for plant protection against insects, fungi and nematodes.
Characterization of WRKY soybean genes responsive to water deficit and study of their promoters. •
Expression of a gene that encodes an osmotin, isolated from Solanum nigrum, aiming enhanced drought tolerance in soybean.
Maria Helena Bodanese Zanettini
She holds a degree in Natural History from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (1972), a master's degree in Genetics and Molecular Biology from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (1975) and a PhD in Genetics and Molecular Biology from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul ( 1982). Retired Full Professor at the Department of Genetics at UFRGS. She is currently Professor/Advisor of the Graduate Program in Genetics and Molecular Biology at the same University. Has experience in the field of Genetics, with an emphasis on Plant Genetics, working mainly in the lines of research: 1) Prospection of genes, tissue culture and genetic manipulation of plants; 2) Genetics, evolution and conservation of plants. Interested in the following topics: soy; somatic embryogenesis; anther culture; genetic transformation; biolistics; Agrobacterium system; co-transformation; transgenic plants; functional genomics; insect resistance; fungus resistance; genetic variability; population structure; plant cytogenetics; meiotic behavior; playback mode; fertility.
Graduated in Biological Sciences from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (2002) and doctorate in Cellular and Molecular Biology (Program of the Biotechnology Center of the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul). Postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Biology at the University of Toronto in Mississauga, in the area of Molecular Biology and Insect Physiology and Junior postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Biophysics at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul. from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, working with plant aquaporins. He has experience in the fields of Molecular Biology, with an emphasis on plant aquaporin genes and the role of these proteins in plant nutrition and response to abiotic stresses. He also has experience in insect physiology, Macromolecule Biochemistry and Enzymology. He is currently Adjunct Professor IV of the Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology at UFRGS.
Maria Helena Bodanese Zanettini
Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul
Campus do Vale, Bento Gonçalves Avenue 9500, Building 4342212, Postal Code 91501-910, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil
Phone: +55 51 3008-6725 E-mail: