Arabidopsis Thaliana


Dec 14, 2012 (4 years and 8 months ago)


Arabidopsis thaliana

The Model Plant for

Genetic Engineering

By Mike Douglas

and Joanna Naymark

Why Is Arabidopsis a

Model Plant?

Relative genetic simplicity

Convenience and abundance

Susceptibility to T
DNA insertions

Basic similarities to other crops

Other Model Organisms

Arabidopsis Genome

Small genome composed of approximately
25,700 genes

5 chromosomes

Genome mapping

project completed

due to

coordinated program


Easy to grow

Small plant size means tens of thousands
can be grown at a time

8 weeks from seeds to seeds

Massive seed production (potential up to
10,000 seeds per plant)

Ability of
Arabidopsis thaliana

to self

Making Knockout Plants

Easily susceptible to

which contain Ti plasmids, the
vehicles for T
DNA insertion

Easy to establish

knockout lines
in short amount of time

Significance of Arabidopsis
in Plant Genetics

Basic life processes similar to those of
more complex crop plants such as
corn, soybean, and wheat

It can be assumed that the basic set
of genes that control these processes
are the same, making findings
applicable to other species

Ultimate goals

Discoveries applicable in genetic
engineering of crop varieties with
disease and insect resistance, and
other enhanced production qualities

Startling fact
: In the next 50 years, we
will need to produce more food than in
the whole of human history and do it on
the same or less amount of arable land.


Arabidopsis is a useful model plant

Simple genome

Easy maintenance and space

Applicable similarities with other plants

Potential to help increase food
production quantity and quality to
feed a growing world population