Francisco Barro Losada

Genetic Transformation and Functional Genomics
The research line uses state-of-the-art Plant Breeding technologies, such as genetic transformation and RNA interference (RNAi), in functional genomic studies to develop new varieties with high added value.

Priority objectives are:

  • broaden the genetic base of crops through the identification of characters of great interest for agriculture in wild-relative to crops and their introgression into cultivated species.
  • to progress in the understanding of the molecular basis of the toxicity of gluten proteins of cereals in relation to coeliac disease and other intolerances to gluten.
  • identification of peptide variants with very low toxicity in relation to coeliac disease and its introgression in cultivated species.
  • application of classical breeding and molecular markers to develop cereal varieties suitable for coeliacs and other people suffering gluten intolerances.

Genetic transformation and RNAi has been used to develop varieties of durum and bread wheat with very low content of gliadins, major responsibles of triggering coeliac disease. Breads made using flours from these lines showed technological and organoleptic properties comparable to those of normal wheat. Therefore, they could be used in the elaboration of foods suitable for coeliac customers.


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  • Email: fbarro@ias.csic.es
  • IAS main building – Office 13 top floor
  • Phone: (+34) 957 49 92 40