Alessandra Frizzi

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In a virus-infected plant, small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) corresponding to the viral genome form a large proportion of the small RNA population. It is possible to reassemble significant portions of the virus sequence from overlapping siRNA sequences and use these to identify the virus. We tested this technique with a resistance-breaking and a(More)
Plants have evolved a variety of gene silencing pathways mediated by small RNAs. Mostly 21 or 24 nt in size, these small RNAs repress the expression of sequence homologous genes at the transcriptional, post-transcriptional and translational levels. These pathways, also referred as RNA silencing pathways, play important roles in regulating growth and(More)
Corn protein is largely made up of a group of nutritionally limited storage proteins known as zein. The reduction of zein can be achieved by a transcriptional mutation, opaque2 (o2), or a transgene targeting zein through RNA interference (RNAi). Zein reduction results in an increase of more nutritionally balanced non-zein proteins, and therefore enhance the(More)
The major maize seed storage proteins, zeins, are deficient in lysine and tryptophan content, which contribute to the poor nutritional quality of corn. Whether through the identification of mutations or genetic engineering, kernels with reduced levels of zein proteins have been shown to have increased levels of lysine and tryptophan. It has been(More)
Although it is one of the major crops in the world, corn has poor nutritional quality for human and animal consumption due to its low lysine content. Here, we report a method of simultaneous expression of a deregulated lysine biosynthetic enzyme, CordapA, and reduction of a bifunctional lysine degradation enzyme, lysine-ketoglutarate reductase/saccharophine(More)
Corn is one of the major crops in the world, but its low lysine content is often problematic for animal consumption. While exogenous lysine supplementation is still the most common solution for today's feed corn, high-lysine corn has been developed through genetic research and biotechnology. Reducing the lysine-poor seed storage proteins, zeins, or(More)
Existing diagnostic techniques used to identify plant-infecting DNA viruses and their associated molecules are often limited in their specificity and can be challenged by samples containing multiple viruses. We adapted a simple method of amplifying circular viral DNA and, in combination with high-throughput sequencing and bioinformatic analysis, used it as(More)
Functional small RNAs, such as short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and microRNAs (miRNAs), exist in freshly consumed fruits and vegetables. These siRNAs can be derived either from endogenous sequences or from viruses that infect them. Symptomatic tomatoes, watermelons, zucchini, and onions were purchased from grocery stores and investigated by small RNA(More)
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