Article

Plant Cell Reports

, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp 238-242

First online:

High efficiency transformation ofBrassica napus usingAgrobacterium vectors

  • Maurice M. MoloneyAffiliated withDepartment of Biological Sciences, University of Calgary
  • , Janis M. WalkerAffiliated withDepartment of Biological Sciences, University of Calgary
  • , Kiran K. SharmaAffiliated withDepartment of Biological Sciences, University of Calgary

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Abstract

An efficient procedure for obtaining transgenicBrassica napus plants usingAgrobacterium binary vectors is described. The target tissue for the transformation is the cut end of cotyledonary petioles. These tissues, when cultured with their lamina intact, show a regeneration frequency of more than 80%. The cells of this cut surface, which undergo organogenesis, are very susceptible to topical infection byAgrobacterium. The cocultivation method used does not require feeder layers or use of exogenously applied promoters of virulence. After 72h of infection withAgrobacterium the explants were transferred to selective regeneration medium. Using kanamycin (15μg cm−3) for selection, transgenic plantlets emerged within 3 weeks. These plantlets which appeared on over half the explants were excised and rooted for a further 7–10 days. When the plants were large enough, leaves were taken for assay of NPT II activity using dot blots. Most of the plants surviving the selection showed substantial NPT II activity. The frequency of transformation and yield of transgenic plants was higher than in previously reported methods with this species. Southern blotting revealed that integration of the T-DNA frequently occurred in multiple copies and at multiple loci in the genome. The transgenicB. napus plants all grew normally and developed fertile flowers. The transgenic plants were self-pollinated and their progeny studied by two methods. The first was a single-embryo NPT II assay performed on developing seeds of these selfed-plants. The second was a leaf bleaching assay performed by selection of germinating seedlings of the selfed progeny. Both assays yielded segregation ratios consistent with the number of integration events indicated by Southern blots. The method should have broad application in studies of gene expression in theBrassicaceae and will be a cost-effective alternative to those seeking to improveBrassica crops by introduction of foreign genes.