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Methods for environmental risk assessment of rice transgenic plants expressing small non-coding RNA
J Plant Biotechnol 2019;46:205-216
Published online September 30, 2019
© 2019 The Korean Society for Plant Biotechnology.

Byung Jun Jin · Hyun Jin Chun · Hyun Min Cho · Su Hyeon Lee · Cheol Woo Choi · Wook-Hun Jung · Dongwon Baek · Chang-deok Han · Min Chul Kim

Division of Applied Life Science (BK21 Plus), Institute of Agriculture & Life Science, Gyeongsang National University, Jinju 52828, Korea
Correspondence to: e-mail:

These authors contributed equally to this work.
Received August 21, 2019; Revised August 26, 2019; Accepted August 26, 2019.
cc This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Since the RNA interference (RNAi) had been discovered in many organisms, small non-coding RNAmediated gene silencing technology, including RNAi have been widely applied to analysis of gene function, as well as crop improvement. Despite the usefulness of RNAi technology, RNAi transgenic crops have various potential environmental risks, including off-target and non-target effects. In this study, we developed methods that can be effectively applied to environmental risk assessment of RNAi transgenic crops and verified these methods in 35S::dsRNAi_eGFP rice transgenic plant we generated. Off-target genes, which can be non-specifically suppressed by the expression of dsRNAi_eGFP, were predicted by using the published web tool, pssRNAit, and verified by comparing their expressions between wild-type (WT) and 35S::dsRNAi_eGFP transgenic rice. Also, we verified the non-target effects of the 35S:: dsRNAi_eGFP plant by evaluating horizontal and vertical transfer of small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) produced in the 35S::dsRNAi_eGFP plant into neighboring WT rice and rhizosphere microorganisms, respectively. Our results suggested that the methods we developed, could be widely applied to various RNAi transgenic crops for their environmental risk assessment.
Keywords : Rice, RNA interference, Small non-coding RNA, Off-target effect, Environmental risk assessment

September 2019, 46 (3)
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