Fast forward genetics based on virus-induced gene silencing

Curr Opin Plant Biol. 1999 Apr;2(2):109-13. doi: 10.1016/S1369-5266(99)80022-3.


Gene expression in plants can be suppressed in a sequence-specific manner by infection with virus vectors carrying fragments of host genes. Recent developments have revealed that the mechanism of this gene silencing is based on an RNA-mediated defence against viruses. It has also emerged that a related mechanism is involved in the post-transcriptional silencing that accounts for between line variation in transgene expression and cosuppresion of transgenes and endogenous genes. The technology of virus-induced gene silencing is being refined and adapted as a high throughput procedure for functional genomics in plants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant
  • Genes, Plant / genetics*
  • Genetic Vectors
  • Oxidoreductases / genetics
  • Plant Diseases / genetics
  • Plant Diseases / virology*
  • Plant Viruses / pathogenicity
  • Plant Viruses / physiology*
  • Plants, Toxic
  • Tobacco / virology


  • Oxidoreductases
  • phytoene dehydrogenase