From axenic spore germination to molecular farming
The first bryophyte tissue culture techniques were established almost a century ago. All of the techniques that have been developed for tissue culture of seed plants have also been adapted for bryophytes, and these range from mere axenic culture to molecular farming. However, specific characteristics of bryophyte biology—for example, a unique regeneration capacity—have also resulted in the development of methodologies and techniques different than those used for seed plants. In this review we provide an overview of the application of in vitro techniques to bryophytes, emphasising the differences as well as the similarities between bryophytes and seed plants. These are discussed within the framework of physiological and developmental processes as well as with respect to potential applications in plant biotechnology.