Low level of iron in staple food crops is one reason for the predominance of iron-deficiency anemia in developing countries. Most of the iron in rice grains accumulates in the outer aleurone layer and embryo, which are removed during milling, and the edible endosperm contains very low amounts of iron. In an effort to increase iron nutrition, we report here the transgene introgression of a high-iron trait into a high-yielding indica rice cultivar. The ferritin gene from soybean (soyfer1) was introduced into rice plants through interbreeding between soybean ferritin-overexpressing transgenic IR68144 and the high-yielding cultivar Swarna. The stable integration of the soyfer1 gene was confirmed in the BC2F4 generation, and the hybrid seeds showed 2.6-fold soybean ferritin gene expression over the recurrent parent Swarna. The hybrid milled seeds revealed a 2.54-fold increase in iron and 1.54-fold increase in zinc compared to Swarna. Agronomic data and an SSR marker analysis of the hybrid rice plants were taken into account for NIL character identification.
Paul, S.; Ali, N.; Datta, S.K.; Datta, K. Development of an Iron-enriched High-yieldings Indica Rice Cultivar by Introgression of A High-iron Trait from Transgenic Iron-biofortified Rice. Plant Foods for Human Nutrition (2014) 69 (3) 203-208. [DOI: 10.1007/s11130-014-0431-z]