The NAC gene family is notable due to its large size, as well as its
relevance in enhancing stress tolerance of plants. Despite the knowledge
about NAC protein function, there is a need for an extensive study on the
possible use of NACs in developing soybean (Glycine max) cultivars with
superior drought tolerance.
Reem M. Hussain from Huazhong Agricultural University, together with his
colleagues, used phylogenetic analysis and identified 139 GmNAC genes.
Real-time quantitative PCR was done on leaf tissues of both sensitive and
tolerant soybean cultivars to analyze the gene expression of 28
dehydration-responsive GmNAC genes. The analysis showed that GmNAC gene
expression is dependent on genotype. Eight of the 28 selected genes
(GmNAC004, GmNAC021, GmNAC065, GmNAC066, GmNAC073, GmNAC082, GmNAC083 and
GmNAC087) were discovered to have high expression levels in the
drought-resistant soybean varieties. Alternatively, the drought-sensitive
cultivars exhibited lower GmNAC expression levels in comparison to their
This study identified GmNAC genes that could be the focus in future studies
in developing superior drought resistant soybean. This study also revealed
more dehydration-responsive GmNAC genes than was previously reported.
Moreover, the study also indicated that genotypes differ in their
drought-induced gene expression.
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