Enhanced Rice quality for Health (EnRicH)

Lead Research Organisation: Rothamsted Research
Department Name: Plant Sciences

Abstract

Rice is a staple food for more than half of the world's population. However, rice is largely consumed as polished grain (white rice) and its consumption, as part of the adoption of a Western diet and increasingly sedentary life style, is associated with increased risk of a range of chronic diseases including type 2 diabetes, obesity, cardio-vascular disease and forms of cancer. Hence it is important to consider the impact of rice on nutrition and health as well as traditional quality attributes. Consequently, the two most important targets for quality improvement of polished white rice are to reduce the rate of digestion in the human gastrointestinal tract (through starch structure manipulation and increasing the percentage of resistant starch) and increase the content of dietary fibre while retaining high yield and good cooking and sensory properties.
The research project will carry out detailed analyses of grain composition of a wide range of rice lines to identify lines with increased health benefits combined with good consumer acceptability. Cutting-edge genetics and bioinformatics will then be used to identify molecular markers that can be used to select for quality traits by breeders.
The improved lines and markers will then be delivered to national and international rice breeding programmes to allow them to develop new commercial varieties.

Planned Impact

The project will bring together major rice research groups in the Philippines and major cereal researchers in the UK at Rothamsted Research. RRes scientists have established research programmes on cereal improvement, in particular the Cell Wall Group has a strong research interest in improving wheat quality with the aim of delivering improved diet and health. The Philippine partners have substantial programmes of research on rice improvement. IRRI is part of the CGIAR system of agricultural research centres with a mandate to lead rice improvement and to translate food and nutritional security in S Asia and SE Asia. DA-PhilRice is the national rice research institute in the Philippines which aims to help develop high-yielding and cost-reducing technologies for farmers, including improved rice varieties.
The partners are committed to provide an infrastructure for research and collaboration beyond the time span of the current grant. A "legacy" of shared platforms for genotyping, rapid screens and data management; and of trained staff, students and early career scientists, will facilitate future research and collaboration on rice improvement within and between the two countries. The partnership will also increase the academic impact of both research communities in international rice research.
In the longer term the project will provide improved health to large populations through diet based interventions in one of the major staples of diet in Asia, at low cost and to improve social welfare.
Dissemination.
1. The primary direct beneficiaries from this project are rice breeders in the target regions who will be provided with elite breeding materials and with state of the art molecular markers and training in their use. Both IRRI and PhilRice have established pathways for dissemination and delivery of improved germplasm to national and international breeders. These include talks, discussions and field demonstrations of improved technologies and agronomic package of practices. Within the Philippines this will make use of the Philippines National Agricultural Research and extension systems (NARES).
2. Publications: a schedule for publication will be agreed, including preparing review articles for journals of wide circulation to rice researchers and other stakeholders, including farmers and breeders, in the Philippines. Primary research data will be published in open access articles in broad scope international refereed journals. Significant findings will be highlighted in press releases issued in the UK and the Philippines.
3. Data from the project will be made freely available to the global rice community on the IRRI web site
4. Presentations will be made at local, national and international meetings of the scientific community such as the Crop Science Society of the Philippines Scientific Conference, the International Rice Congress.
5. Wider communication to the general public will be made via institute open days, public meetings and articles in local publications. This will be aided by press releases highlighting the relevance of the work to food security and environmental sustainability.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description Rothamsted Research has analysed the cell wall polysaccharides in polished grain of a diversity panel of 370 rice lines. We have identified variation in amount, by over three-fold, and composition. Statistical analysis was used to divide the lines into 10 groups which differed in both total amount and composition, with current rice breeding lines being intermediate in content. This is important as the level of dietary fibre has an impact on how fast the starch in rice grains is digested. This is of significance as if starch is digested fast, the rice is said to have a high GI (Glycaemic Index) value and consumption of foods with a high GI are associated with increased risks of a number of chronic diseases, including type II diabetes. The study therefore demonstrated that substantial variation exists in the content and composition of the major dietary fibre fraction of polished rice which should be amenable to exploitation by breeders to incorporate the beneficial high fibre trait in improved rice cultivars while maintaining high yields and high consumer acceptability. This could contribute to reduced burdens of diet-related chronic diseases globally. Partners in the Philippines have been involved in field trials and consumer-trial testing as well as analysis of amylose content which is a crucial quality determinant for rice.
Exploitation Route Make available genomic information/markers related to high fibre/low GI rice when available.
Make rice lines available to National and International rice breeding programmes with high dietary fibre.
Sectors Agriculture, Food and Drink,Healthcare

 
Description BB/GCRF-IAA/17/18
Amount £9,600 (GBP)
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2017 
End 02/2018
 
Description GCRF-IAA
Amount £5,250 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/GCRF-IAA/17/18 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2017 
End 02/2018
 
Description GCRF-IAA
Amount £4,350 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/GCRF-IAA/17/18 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2017 
End 02/2018
 
Description Philippines partners 
Organisation International Rice Research Institute
Department Grain Quality and Nutrition Center
Country Philippines 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Rothamsted has a major programme on the biosynthesis and composition of wheat dietary fibre and its role in human health. We have identified a high level of variation in the content of the major dietary fibre components in wheat flour and bran fractions, with a substantial proportion of this variation being heritable and hence appropriate for selection in breeding programmes. We bring expertise in a suite of analytical techniques for fibre analysis, based on state of the art analytical equipment, including HP-AEC-PAD, HP-SEC-MALS, mass spectrometry, including MALDI-Tof, Q-traps, Orbitrap; GC-FID and GC-MS allowing detailed analysis of cell wall polysaccharides. We now intend to use this expertise to develop tools to analyse cell wall polysaccharides in diverse rice germplasm to improve the dietary fibre content in high yielding rice cultivars.
Collaborator Contribution IRRI brings extensive expertise in the domain of grain quality and nutrition, plant breeding related activities, effective agronomic management expertise, impact assessment and extension value chain with a well established network of varietal delivery systems. Analytical platforms related to size exclusion chromatography, resistant starch (RS) measurements and comprehensive grain quality profiling methods with ISO 17025 accredited facilities. Expertise in rice genomics, associating phenotypic characteristics with genetic factors to measure quality traits that relate to biochemical composition, flavor, and texture. Bioinformatic tools related to genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been established for the detection of major and minor QTLs and fine mapping of the QTLs underlying complex traits of grain quality from untapped germplasm. DA-PhilRice conduct grain quality analysis particularly in sensory evaluation, employing laboratory and consumer panelists. DA-PhilRice also provides field trialling facilities.
Impact No outputs as yet.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Philippines partners 
Organisation Philippine Rice Research Institute
Country Philippines 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Rothamsted has a major programme on the biosynthesis and composition of wheat dietary fibre and its role in human health. We have identified a high level of variation in the content of the major dietary fibre components in wheat flour and bran fractions, with a substantial proportion of this variation being heritable and hence appropriate for selection in breeding programmes. We bring expertise in a suite of analytical techniques for fibre analysis, based on state of the art analytical equipment, including HP-AEC-PAD, HP-SEC-MALS, mass spectrometry, including MALDI-Tof, Q-traps, Orbitrap; GC-FID and GC-MS allowing detailed analysis of cell wall polysaccharides. We now intend to use this expertise to develop tools to analyse cell wall polysaccharides in diverse rice germplasm to improve the dietary fibre content in high yielding rice cultivars.
Collaborator Contribution IRRI brings extensive expertise in the domain of grain quality and nutrition, plant breeding related activities, effective agronomic management expertise, impact assessment and extension value chain with a well established network of varietal delivery systems. Analytical platforms related to size exclusion chromatography, resistant starch (RS) measurements and comprehensive grain quality profiling methods with ISO 17025 accredited facilities. Expertise in rice genomics, associating phenotypic characteristics with genetic factors to measure quality traits that relate to biochemical composition, flavor, and texture. Bioinformatic tools related to genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been established for the detection of major and minor QTLs and fine mapping of the QTLs underlying complex traits of grain quality from untapped germplasm. DA-PhilRice conduct grain quality analysis particularly in sensory evaluation, employing laboratory and consumer panelists. DA-PhilRice also provides field trialling facilities.
Impact No outputs as yet.
Start Year 2016