, Volume 14, Issue 11, pp 708-711

Rapid propagation through shoot tip culture of Trichopus zeylanicus Gaertn., a rare ethnomedicinal plant

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Rapid micropropagation of Trichopus zeylanicus Gaertn. subsp. travancoricus Burkil ex Narayanan, a rare ethnomedicinal herb endemic to the Western Ghats of southern India, was achieved by culturing shoot tips (0.3–0.5 cm) of 2-month-old axenic seedlings on Woody Plant Medium. Among the cytokinins tested, only BAP induced callus-free multiple shoot bud formation, with a maximum of 8.5±0.4 buds per explant being obtained with 2.0 mg.l−1 BAP after 8 weeks of culture. Shoot tips containing proliferated buds were divided and subcultured on medium containing 0.2 mg.l−1 BAP to produce 12.0±1.0 shoots per explant in 6 weeks. Excision of buds after culture initiation, with subculture of the debudded basal tissue in 2 successive passages yielded 20.0±1.0 and 13.5±0.5 buds per explant respectively. Each bud cultured in turn for 4 weeks on WPM with 1.0 mg.l−1 BAP formed 3.8±0.4 secondary buds which were repeatedly recultured to increase bud production. Altogether this method enabled an estimated harvest of 7848 buds from a single shoot tip in 28 months. Shoots (3–5 cm) developed from bud cultures were rooted in half-strength WPM medium with 0.5 mg.l−1 each of NAA and IBA, and 90–100% of the rooted plants were established in the field after hardening. Micropropagated plants were grown to maturity free of defects in growth, morphological, flowering and seed set characteristics.

Communicated by G.C. Phillips