We have had several serious problems up to the present time: for example, the exhaustion of energy and resources, as well as aggravation of the environment situation on earth. This situation will continue into the near future. One means to solve these problems is to achieve an increased yield of biomass and to develop useful techniques of biomass utilization, able to take the place of present energy and resource power. As trees are a major biomass, it is very important to aim at improving trees by use of genetic engineering techniques and to establish some useful conversion systems of biomass in the near future.
First of all, we focused on the lignin synthetic pathway, occupying a huge second metabolism system in trees, and tried to inhibit lignin biosynthesis and to form a useful tree with of less lignin content yet able to use polysaccharide materials effectively. Populus kitakamiensis is used as the plant material, and the target gene of the lignin biosynthesis pathway is the peroxidase involved in lignification. The gene inhibited by antisense RNA.
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