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Resveratrol-enriched GM rice developed

South Korean researchers have developed a genetically modified rice line with enriched resveratrol (3,5,4′-trihydroxy-trans-stilbene) content. The researchers transformed the japonica rice variety, Dongjin, with a peanut stilbene synthase gene, AhSTS1, that is highly expressed in the early and middle stages of developing pods but not in leaf tissue. The GM rice produced polished grain with up to 1.9 µg/g resveratrol. Untransformed Dongjin rice has a high fibre and polyphenol content but does not produce any resveratrol. It was developed by the Korean Rural Development Administration to provide a healthier alternative to standard rice to mitigate metabolic syndrome. Feeding trials confirmed that the GM rice has better anti-metabolic syndrome activity than reported elsewhere because of the synergistic interaction between the transgenic resveratrol and the endogenous properties of the rice, the researchers note. The new rice could offer a “safe and convenient” way to treat and prevent metabolic syndrome and related diseases. Details of the study have been published in the journal, PLoS One.

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