MicroRNA as a Tool for Mitigating Abiotic Stress in Rice (Oryza sativa L.)
Oryza sativa, a model plant species is one of the most imperative food crops of the globe which feeds over two billion people including Indians. Plants are subjected to multiple stresses in chorus leading to colossal changes in the molecular landscape of a cell. Being sessile rice crop is persistently exposed to various abiotic stresses with devastating effect on its survival and productivity. Abiotic stresses can change growth, development and productivity of plants. Rice has developed extremely complex molecular machineries to sense a range of stress signals and bring forth an exact response to minimize the harm. Augmentation of rice productivity can significantly elevate the economic status of India. Recently, non-protein–coding microRNAs have acknowledged tremendous attention due to their value in negative gene regulation. In plants, despite regulating developmental, physiological and biological processes like immune responses, cell differentiation and fate determination, microRNAs have also been allied with varied biotic and abiotic stresses. Modification of miRNA regulatory landscape can significantly modify the product of a stress response which can consequently prove to be essential in understanding the molecular architecture of plant stress response repertoire and the cross-talk between diverse stress responses. The miRNA-mediated post-transcriptional gene silencing is one of the methods to establish plant abiotic stress tolerance. This review provides an up-date on microRNAs, role of miRNA on abiotic stress response in rice, rice miRNA-directed regulatory network and the genetic engineering perspectives of miRNAs applications in rice tolerance to various abiotic stress environments.
KeywordsOryza sativa miRNA history miRNA biogenesis Drought Salinity Cold stress Heat stress Oxidative stress Cadmium stress Post-transcriptional gene regulation
Dr. Saurabh Raghuvanshi is acknowledged for introducing me to the world of micro RNAs while working under his guidance as IASc-INSA-NASI Summer Research Teacher Fellow in 2014 at Laboratory of Structural Genomics & Bioinformatics, Department of Plant Molecular Biology, Delhi University, South Campus, New Delhi, India.
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