High-throughput analysis of rice genes by means of the heterologous full-length cDNA overexpressor (FOX)-hunting system
Review | Published: 30 August 2013
Mieko Higuchi-Takeuchi1, Masaki Mori2 and Minami Matsui*,1,3
1RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science, Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan, 2Disease Resistance Crops Research and Development Unit, National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan and 3Biomass Engineering Program Cooperation Division, RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science, Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan
Mutant populations are indispensable tools for investigating plant gene functions. Gain-of-function technology is one of the approaches used for the systematic production of mutant resources and activation tagging is a well-established method to generate gain-of-function mutants in plants. As an alternative approach for the systematic generation of a gain-of-function mutant population, we developed the Full-length cDNA OvereXpressor (FOX)-hunting system in which full-length cDNAs (fl-cDNAs) are overexpressed in plants to quickly identify candidate genes. The FOX-hunting system was used for high-throughput analysis of rice (Oryza sativa) genes heterologously expressed in Arabidopsis thaliana (rice FOX Arabidopsis lines). A large screening to identify and characterize rice genes with rice FOX Arabidopsis lines revealed that one of the isolated genes, BROAD-SPECTRUM RESISTANCE 1 (BSR1) conferred multiple or broad-spectrum disease resistance in both a dicotyledonous and monocotyledonous plant. We found that expression of rice fl-cDNAs without a homolog in Arabidopsis affected morphological traits. In addition, overexpression of homologous genes of rice and Arabidopsis led to a similar phenotype. Thus, we conclude that the FOX-hunting system is an excellent heterologous system and offers a new tool with which to explore gene function in rice.