Abstract & Bio
 Title: “ A Multipronged approach to improve the protein quality of soybean seed ”




Hari B. Krishnan 



USDA-ARS, Columbia, Missouri, USA


Soybeans are a major component in human diets and animal feeds worldwide. Commercial soybean cultivars grown in the U.S. contain ~18% oil and ~38% protein. Soybean provides an inexpensive source of high quality protein and oil for human consumption, animal feed, and industrial uses. Even though soybeans are an excellent source of protein, the concentration of cysteine (Cys) and methione (Met), two sulfur-containing amino acids, are not adequate to meet the optimal growth and development of monogastric animals. Consequently, concerted efforts have been made to increase the concentration of cysteine and methionine in soybean seeds by both classical breeding and genetic engineering.  A multipronged approach has been employed in our laboratory to enhance the sulfur amino acid content of soybean seeds.  These approaches include (1) the incorporation and expression of heterologous seed proteins rich in sulfur-containing amino acids, (2) the use of soybean seed storage protein mutants, (3) identifying soybean cultivars that accumulate cysteine-rich proteins, (4) high-throughput elemental profiling (ionomic screening) and (5) genetic manipulation of enzymes involved in sulfur assimilatory pathway.  Progress from some of these approaches to improve the protein quality of soybean seed will be presented in this seminar.


Hari Krishnan is a Research Molecular Biologist in Plant Genetics Research Unit of the USDA-Agricultural Research Service at Columbia, Missouri. He is also an Adjunct Professor in the Division of Plant Sciences at University of Missouri. Dr. Krishnan received a B.Sc degree from Nandanam Arts College, Madras, M.S. degree from Annamali University, India and a Ph.D. degree from Washington State University. He is internationally recognized for his significant contributions to the improvement of soybean protein quality and enhancement of biological nitrogen fixation. Dr. Krishnan has authored/co-authored 172 peer reviewed journal articles, 6 book chapters, 4 review articles and edited/co-edited two ASA monographs. He has numerous invitations to present his research at national and international conferences.

He has served as Associate Editor of Crop Science, and has been active in the Crops Science Society of America and American Society of Agronomy including service as a two-term member of the Book, Monograph and Multimedia committee.

He was elected as Fellow of Crop Science Society of America, Fellow of Agronomy Society of America and a Fellow of National Academy of Biological Sciences, India