- A nematode Meloidegyne incognitia infects the roots of tobacco plants.
- The process of RNA interference was adopted to prevent the infection of tobacco plants.
- The process of RNA interference (RNAi) involves silencing of a specific mRNA due to a complementary dsRNA (double stranded RNA) molecule that binds to and prevents translation of the mRNA, also referred as RNA silencing.
- The source of this complementary RNA could be from an infection by viruses having RNA genomes or transposons which are mobile genetic elements that replicate via an RNA intermediate.
- Using Agrobacterium vectors, nematode-specific genes were introduced into the host plant such that it produced both sense and anti-sense RNA in the host cells.
- Two RNA’s being complementary to each other formed a double stranded RNA (dsRNA) that initiated RNAi and thus, silenced the specific mRNA of the nematode.
Fig. Meloidegyne incognitia
Fig. RNA silencing