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Plant Cell Physiol. 2011 Feb;52(2):265-73. doi: 10.1093/pcp/pcq190. Epub 2010 Dec 23.

RiceFOX: a database of Arabidopsis mutant lines overexpressing rice full-length cDNA that contains a wide range of trait information to facilitate analysis of gene function.

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RIKEN Plant Science Center, 1-7-22 Suehiro-cho, Tsurumi-ku, Yokohama, 230-0045 Japan.


Identification of gene function is important not only for basic research but also for applied science, especially with regard to improvements in crop production. For rapid and efficient elucidation of useful traits, we developed a system named FOX hunting (Full-length cDNA Over-eXpressor gene hunting) using full-length cDNAs (fl-cDNAs). A heterologous expression approach provides a solution for the high-throughput characterization of gene functions in agricultural plant species. Since fl-cDNAs contain all the information of functional mRNAs and proteins, we introduced rice fl-cDNAs into Arabidopsis plants for systematic gain-of-function mutation. We generated >30,000 independent Arabidopsis transgenic lines expressing rice fl-cDNAs (rice FOX Arabidopsis mutant lines). These rice FOX Arabidopsis lines were screened systematically for various criteria such as morphology, photosynthesis, UV resistance, element composition, plant hormone profile, metabolite profile/fingerprinting, bacterial resistance, and heat and salt tolerance. The information obtained from these screenings was compiled into a database named 'RiceFOX'. This database contains around 18,000 records of rice FOX Arabidopsis lines and allows users to search against all the observed results, ranging from morphological to invisible traits. The number of searchable items is approximately 100; moreover, the rice FOX Arabidopsis lines can be searched by rice and Arabidopsis gene/protein identifiers, sequence similarity to the introduced rice fl-cDNA and traits. The RiceFOX database is available at

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