The intragenic approach as a new extension to traditional plant breeding

Trends in Plant Science
Caius M RommensWilliam R Belknap


The novel intragenic approach to genetic engineering improves existing varieties by eliminating undesirable features and activating dormant traits. It transforms plants with native expression cassettes to fine-tune the activity and/or tissue specificity of target genes. Any intragenic modification of traits could, at least in theory, also be accomplished by traditional breeding and transgenic modification. However, the new approach is unique in avoiding the transfer of unknown or foreign DNA. By consequently eliminating various potential risk factors, this method represents a relatively safe approach to crop improvement. Therefore, we argue that intragenic crops should be cleared through the regulatory process in a timely and cost-effective manner.


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