Purple cotton is coming, and genetic technology has bred natural color cotton


Selection of different fiber color strains of purple mutant HS2, color cotton parents and their hybrid offspring (Courtesy of respondents)


Pattern diagram of color cotton fiber modification using violet mutants combined with gene manipulation (courtesy of respondent)

The study found that the currently known natural color cotton varieties of resources belong to the brown and green series, due to the monotony of color, color fastness and color saturation, it has become a technical bottleneck restricting the development of the color cotton industry.

Recently, The team of Sun Yuqiang, a professor at the School of Life Sciences and Medicine of Zhejiang Sci-Tech University, has cultivated a new strain of colored cotton by creating a cotton purple mutant and combining hybrid breeding technology to increase the content of proanthocyanidins in fibers. The results of the study were published online on May 3 in the Plant Biotechnology Journal.

In 2010, Sun Yuqiang’s team began to use agrobacterium-mediated cotton transgenic technology to create cotton mutants, one of which was violet mutant strain HS2 from seed germination to plant decay, and the stems, leaves, buds and other tissues and organs were purple throughout the growth period, and stable inheritance.

Sun Yuqiang introduced to China Science Daily: “We found that HS2 mutants showed purple from stems and leaves to flowers, bells and other organs, while the fiber color did not change, which may be related to the fact that the expression levels of Ghavanr and GhLAR in the mutants were not significantly increased, resulting in insufficient accumulation of fibrous proanthocyanidins and still showing white.” ”

So, can HS2 be used for genetic improvement of colored fibers so that the fiber color deepens or even presents a new color?

In 2012, Sun Yuqiang’s team used HS2 to conduct positive and negative crossbreeding with nine brown cotton and green cotton varieties/strains, and used purple traits and fiber color binding molecular markers to select stable hybrid offspring lines.

The study found that after entering the boll stage, the anthocyanin content in the leaves was significantly lower than HS2, higher than that of the colored cotton parents, and still showed light purple and purple red, which showed that the free anthocyanins accumulated in HS2 purple plants could enter the fiber cavity in large quantities through the upregulated expression of GhLAR and GGANR for fiber improvement of brown cotton and green cotton.

Sun Yuqiang told China Science Daily: “After many generations of selective breeding, we have obtained strains with stable fiber color and significant color changes, including dark brown to coffee, green, army green and dark green, orange, and different shades of blue. ”

At present, Sun Yuqiang’s team is continuing to carry out the improvement of colored cotton fiber and the cultivation of new colored cotton. He said that colored cotton fibers naturally have colors when they are mature, which can avoid environmental pollution caused by textile chemical printing and dyeing and the harm to people’s health, because of its high content of anthocyanins, it also has high antioxidant properties, antibacterial properties and other advantages, and is expected to be further applied to infant clothing, toys and medical gauze in the future. (Source: China Science Daily, Shen Chunlei, Zhang Ruoxian)

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