CA15223 Modifying plants to produce interfering RNA

COST CA15223 Modifying plants to produce interfering RNA

Participants: Dr. Donatas Šneideris and Tomaš Šimulevič

Project duration: 12.02.2016 – 26.10.2020

The main purposes and tasks of this COST Action:

Because of RNA inhibition, the methods related to plant protection mechanisms and plant metabolism modification constitute a research field of great potential. Interfering RNA can be used seeking to improve plant composition thereby increasing the amount of useful nutrients and improving plant productivity, inhibiting undesirable features and switching the use of energy resources over to higher quality and productivity characteristics. The expression of pathogens and pest genes can be identified, and modified plants, performing the expression of interfering RNA, can be directed towards fight against pathogens, which affect the basic physiological functions and cause plant diseases.

So far, it is not entirely clear what are the functions of most of mini and interfering RNAs (miRNAs, siRNA) in the iRNA inhibition process, and knowledge of the dynamics and specificity of these molecules in plant systems is limited.

COST Action No 15223 coordinates the tasks of the development of new transgenic plant strategies and the tasks of scientific research in many EU and neighbouring countries.

This COST Action encompasses the following areas:

  1. a) The impact of RNA molecules in inducing resistance to diseases and pests and managing metabolism processes.
  2. b) Investigations into specificity of particular miRNA or siRNA and their impact on target and non-target systems.
  3. c) Development of risk assessment strategy and management guidelines related to miRNA and siRNA impact on food products, feed and environment.
  4. d) Understanding of the ways of degradation of two-chain RNA and transfer, absorption, systemic distribution and degradation of miRNA.
  5. f) Effects of plant RNAi technology and its products on the environment, as well as social and economic life.