Global climate changes and an increased shortage of water worldwide have made drought a serious concern for agricultural interests. Current approaches of preventing drought-induced plant deterioration include genetically modified crops (GMC) and chemical protection. Both options are either costly highly sensitive or lack the complete protection needed. The scientist at Georgetown University in collaboration with the scientist at Howard University identified series of novel compounds that inhibit the function of the gene involved in the drought resistance to ultimately prevent drought-induced plant deterioration. Stage of Development: Efficacy of these compounds in preventing drought-induced plant deterioration has been demonstrated using Arabidopsis. Proof-of-concept in other important agricultural species has been also demonstrated.
1) The target gene is highly conserved across plant species and therefore these compounds should have widespread applicability including food and biofuel production. 2) Inhibition of the target gene and its protein function may provide protection against other environmental stressor. 3) Inhibition of the target gene has been proven to provide chemical protection. 4) Efficacy has been proved using different crops.