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Physiol Mol Biol Plants. 2010 Dec;16(4):321-32. doi: 10.1007/s12298-010-0036-4. Epub 2010 Dec 7.

RNAi induced gene silencing in crop improvement.

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Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Basic Sciences & Humanities, Rajendra Agricultural University, Pusa (Samastipur), Bihar India.


The RNA silencing is one of the innovative and efficient molecular biology tools to harness the down-regulation of expression of gene(s) specifically. To accomplish such selective modification of gene expression of a particular trait, homology dependent gene silencing uses a stunning variety of gene silencing viz. co-suppression, post-transcriptional gene silencing, virus-induced gene silencing etc. This family of diverse molecular phenomena has a common exciting feature of gene silencing which is collectively called RNA interference abbreviated to as RNAi. This molecular phenomenon has become a focal point of plant biology and medical research throughout the world. As a result, this technology has turned out to be a powerful tool in understanding the function of individual gene and has ultimately led to the tremendous use in crop improvement. This review article illustrates the application of RNAi in a broad area of crop improvement where this technology has been successfully used. It also provides historical perspective of RNAi discovery and its contemporary phenomena, mechanism of RNAi pathway.


Crop improvement; Gene silencing; RNAi; RNAi vector

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