The Salt Lab
The aim is to discover mechanisms of salinity tolerance and apply these to increase yield of crops in saline conditions.
The Salt Lab
Group photo of The Salt Lab
International Center for Biosaline Agriculture
Irrigation pipes installed in our field trial in Dubai (International Center for Biosaline Agriculture)
Barley plants growing in our field trial in Dubai (International Center for Biosaline Agriculture)
Hydroponic experiment with Galapagos Tomatoes
Hydroponic experiment with Galapagos Tomatoes at the Greenhouse, KAUST
The Salt Lab Overview
Soil salinity is a major constraint to crop productivity, particularly in arid and semi-arid regions. The Salt Lab started in February 2013. The aim of the research program is to understand the basis for natural variation in salinity tolerance of plants such as barley and tomatoes and use this knowledge to increase the salinity tolerance of existing crops such as wheat, rice, barley and tomatoes.
We are targeting gene discovery in barley and tomatoes because they have a good degree of tolerance already (so have genes worth discovering!), are diploid, inbred with a publicly available genome sequence and can be genetically transformed. We are focusing on naturally existing genetic diversity within the plants, as it is thought that genes discovered from this source are less likely to be associated with significant deleterious side effects.
We do not study salinity tolerance in total, but instead we use forward genetics to discover new QTLs/genes for specific traits that we hypothesize contribute significantly to the salinity tolerance of the whole plant.
24 August, 2021New Salt Lab paper is out! Quinoa Phenotyping Methodologies: An International Consensus
New Salt Lab paper is out! Quinoa Phenotyping Methodologies: An International Consensus
18 April, 2018Plant Sciences Program seminar - Dr. Matthew Reynolds
Plant Sciences Program seminar - Dr. Matthew ReynoldsPlant Sciences Program seminar by Dr. Matthew Reynolds, Global Wheat Program, CIMMYT, Mexico
09 February, 2017New Salt Lab paper is out! - The genome of Chenopodium quinoa
New Salt Lab paper is out! - David E. Jarvis, Yung Shwen Ho, Damien J. Lightfoot, Sandra M. Schmöckel, Bo Li, Theo J. A. Borm, Hajime Ohyanagi, Katsuhiko Mineta, Craig T. Michell, Noha Saber, Najeh M. Kharbatia, Ryan R. Rupper, Aaron R. Sharp, Nadine Dally, Berin A. Boughton, Yong H. Woo, Ge Gao, Elio G. W. M. Schijlen, Xiujie Guo, Afaque A. Momin, Sónia Negrão, Salim Al-Babili, Christoph Gehring, Ute Roessner, Christian Jung, Kevin Murphy, Stefan T. Arold, Takashi Gojobori, C. Gerard van der Linden, Eibertus N. van Loo, Eric N. Jellen, Peter J. Maughan & Mark Tester. The genome of Chenopodium quinoa. Nature. doi:10.1038/nature21370