High salinity has adverse effects on plant growth and crop yield and is one of the major abiotic stresses in agriculture. The area of agricultural land rendered unusable by salinity is increasing around the world, often because of modern farming practices such as irrigation. To sustain agricultural productivity and improve agricultural practices it is essential to increase the salt tolerance of plants by either traditional breeding or genetic manipulation. We used the FOX hunting system to collect rice genes with potential for use in molecular breeding to increase tolerance to salinity.
To identify rice FOX Arabidopsis lines with higher tolerance to salinity stress, we sterilized about 15 T2 seeds of each of 21 048 lines and sowed them on 1/2 MS medium containing 1% sucrose, 0.8% agar, and 150 mM NaCl. After cold stratification (4 °C for 2-4 days), seeds were incubated at 22 °C under continuous light. Germination of seeds and growth of seedlings were assessed visually for a week.