You may often hear such a Tucao: now many kinds of tomatoes, but also bigger and better look, but not as good as in the past. Do not worry, good news came: not long ago, the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, the agricultural genomics researchers breed a number of new varieties of tomatoes, taste much better than before. Tomato and other fruits and vegetables why the taste worse? Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences researchers through what magical method to cultivate a delicious tomato varieties?
The taste of tomatoes is not as good as before, because the breeding process lost part of the control flavor of the gene
Tomato, also known as tomatoes, native to South America, about the Ming Dynasty into our country. It is wide adaptability, high yield, rich nutrition, unique flavor, is widely cultivated in the world's largest vegetable crops. According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization statistics, 2014 global tomato output reached 96.28 billion US dollars. China to fresh tomatoes, pay more attention to flavor quality.
According to the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, deputy director of the Institute of Agricultural Genetics Huang Sanwen introduction, we are now eating tomatoes are made by wild currant tomato domesticated varieties, wild tomato fruit is very small, only 1-2 grams of weight, after artificial long-term Domesticated, modern cultivation of tomato fruit weight is more than 100 times its ancestors.
Huang Sanwen said that tomato taste is not as good as before, because in the modern breeding process too much emphasis on yield, appearance and other indicators, although the output is large, looks good, but the control of flavor quality part of the genetic locus is lost. The results showed that the contents of 13 flavors in tomato were significantly lower in modern tomato varieties, which changed the taste of tomatoes.
Can you use modern technology to cultivate good-looking and delicious tomatoes? Huang Sanwen thought of genome editing technology. From the source to start, first find the impact of tomato taste "gene password" and "rdquo ;. "Our taste buds have been trying to find the old taste of hiding in the & lsquo; genetic code" rsc "; once found the decision to tomato flavor related genes, the problem will be solved. "Said Huang Sanwen.
In 2012, Huang Sanwen led the team to participate in the tomato genome sequencing project, cracked with 900 million base pairs of tomato genome map, the related research results published in the authoritative academic journal "Nature" magazine. In 2014, Huang Sanwen led the team and many domestic team engaged in tomato research together to open the tomato fruit from small to large artificial domestication process, namely: wild currant tomatoes produce cherry tomatoes, and finally the formation of large fruit cultivation of tomatoes. At the same time, they constructed a map of tomato genomic variation and found 12 million genomic variants. In January 2017, Huang Sanwen team finally cracked the tomato flavor gene code, the international top academic journal "science" in the form of cover articles reported the results of this research.
In order to identify the fine genes in the tomato germplasm, we carried out genome-wide sequencing and multi-point phenotypic identification of 400 representative tomato germplasms worldwide. Using genome-wide association analysis and linkage analysis, more than 200 major genetic loci affecting 33 flavor substances were identified. "The study found that two of these genes control the sugar content of tomatoes and five control the acid content," said Dr. Zhu Guangtao, the first author of the Institute of Genomics, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences.
The study also found that citric acid and malic acid are the main acids in tomatoes, citric acid can improve the flavor of tomatoes, but malic acid to reduce the flavor, the researchers thus found to reduce malic acid, improve the citrate content of the technical route.
In theory, any flavored tomato can be achieved through genomic editing techniques
Why is genomic editing technology so amazing?
Huang Sanwen said that the genome is the sum of all the genetic information of a species, a new generation of genomic technology is considered to drive the future economy of subversive innovation technology. In 2002, the rice genome published by Chinese scientists promoted the application of genomics in agricultural breeding. Genome editing technology is a direct product of the rapid development of genomics. If you want to prepare best-selling books or good news first to carefully read the same original, in order to better use of genomic editing technology, first of all to read the genome, read the genome.
Huang Sanwen, genome editing technology is the forefront of the current life science research, the use of the technology, scientists can target the target to knock out or insert, so as to obtain beneficial traits to humans. Among them, CRISPR / Cas9 technology because of its high editing efficiency, easy operation and so on, become the current research and development of biological research and m & mdash; they find and improve the taste of tomato is used in this technology.
He said, for example, the daily consumption of tomatoes are red and fruit two kinds of red fruit tomatoes strong resistance to storage and transportation, but the taste is poor; pink tomatoes high value, good flavor, but there are easy to store shortcomings. Therefore, the traditional breeding is mainly concentrated in the red fruit tomatoes, high quality pink tomato varieties less. Huang Sanwen team using genomic editing technology, will control the tomato fruit color, taste and other genes were edited, only 10 months to get the storage and transportation, good flavor of pink tomatoes.
In theory, the future people want to eat what flavor of tomatoes, can be achieved through genomic editing techniques. & Rdquo;
Huang Sanwen said that their team and collaborators have cultivated new varieties of tomatoes with higher sugar content. The next step will further improve the content of beneficial volatile substances, cultivate a more delicious varieties of tomatoes, and strive to restore the original flavor of tomatoes.
Through the genome editing technology, can greatly improve the bread or rice amylose ratio, so as to benefit the diabetes
In the field of crop breeding, the role of genomic editing techniques is not only used in tomatoes. Huang Sanwen said that the genome editing technology has greatly improved the crop breeding progress, through the "ed" gene, some wheat, rice, corn, potato and other new crop lines have also come out.
National Science and Technology Department of crop genetic resources and germplasm creation key laboratory director Zhang Xueyong researcher said that the genomics editing technology in the field of agriculture is broad prospects. Compared with physical or chemical mutation breeding, genome editing technology can be more accurate and finer to change the synthesis of organic macromolecules in the speed and direction, is a precision breeding technology. & Rdquo;
Zhang Xueyong said that there are two kinds of starch in the bread or rice, that is, amylose and amylopectin. Which amylopectin is easily hydrolyzed to glucose, and amylose degradation into glucose is much slower. Through the gene editing technology, you can knock out or weaken the amylopectin synthesis of gene activity, increase the proportion of amylose, so that the proportion of amylose from 10 percent to 60% to 70%, so that Effective control of diabetes after the rapid rise in blood sugar after the situation, the benefit of diabetes.
Zhang Xueyong introduced, through the genomic editing technology, but also can change the soybean, rape and other crops in the proportion of oil components, increased linolenic acid, linoleic acid and other excellent ingredients of the proportion of good for health and longevity. The technology also makes cotton fiber finer and longer, increase the proportion of high-quality cotton, increase cotton farmers income. In addition, it can change the corn, rice and other crops leaves the angle, more conducive to close planting to achieve the purpose of high yield. "Genomic editing technology can control the color of flowers, to create some of the nature of the orchids, peony color, improve the quality of flowers to meet the needs of different groups of people. & Rdquo;
Zhang Xueyong that the future use of genomic editing technology can also be based on people's needs, change the flavor of many agricultural products, color, extend the shelf life of agricultural products for the development of modern agriculture into a strong scientific and technological power, better benefit mankind.
(Original title: the use of genomic editing technology can target the gene "modify" to achieve accurate breeding want to eat what kind of tomatoes? "Edit & rdquo;