Expression of heterologous Vitreoscilla hemoglobin in barley

Annika Wilhelmson, P.T. Kallio, Kirsi-Marja Oksman-Caldentey, Anna-Maria Nuutila

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review


    Anaerobiosis occurs in seeds of many higher plants during imbibition. After successful germination followed by penetration of the enclosing structures by the radicle, the embryo switches from fermentative to aerobic energy metabolism. The microbial population, which is naturally present on the covering layers of barley grains, may lead to oxygen deficiency by competing for oxygen with the grain tissues. Although imbibed barley grains can survive several days under anoxia, they require oxygen to complete germination. Therefore, novel methods are useful to improve oxygen transfer and enhance germination of seeds. The advances in genetic engineering have opened new possibilities to study oxygen limitation and other critical mechanisms of germination. Previously, heterologous expression of Vitreoscilla hemoglobin (VHb) has been shown to improve either growth properties or productivity of various microbes and plants. Therefore, our metabolic engineering approach was to express the Vitreoscilla hemoglobin gene (vhb) in germinating barley to alleviate adverse effects of inadequate oxygen availability. However, our results show that VHb expression did not improve germination or growth of barley.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publication9th International Barley Genetics Symposium
    Subtitle of host publicationBook of Abstracts and CD-ROM Proceedings
    EditorsJ. Spunar, J. Janikova
    PublisherInstitute of Agricultural and Food Information
    ISBN (Print)978-80-90254-59-6, 80-90254-59-4
    Publication statusPublished - 2004
    MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
    Event9th International Barley Genetics Symposium - Brno, Czech Republic
    Duration: 20 Jun 200426 Jun 2004
    Conference number: 9

    Publication series

    SeriesCzech Journal of Genetics and Plant Breeding
    NumberSpecial Issue


    Conference9th International Barley Genetics Symposium
    Country/TerritoryCzech Republic


    • barley
    • germination
    • anaerobiosis
    • vitreoscilla
    • hemoglobin
    • transgenic plant


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