, Volume 23, Issue 2, pp 269-277
Date: 22 Nov 2008

The salt-tolerance gene rstB can be used as a selectable marker in plant genetic transformation

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Abstract

The salt-tolerance gene rstB under the control of the cauliflower mosaic virus 35S promoter was used as a selectable marker gene in the Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation of tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum cv. Xanthi). The selective agent for plant regeneration was tolerance to 170 mM sodium chloride. The highest selection efficiency was 83.3%. No obvious differences in selection efficiencies were observed when those obtained using the standard selectable marker gene hpt and a selection regime of 10 mg l−1 hygromycin. Transgenic events were confirmed by PCR, Southern blot, RT-PCR and green fluorescent protein studies. The rstB transgenic plants showed improved salt tolerance and a normal phenotype. Based on these results, we suggest that the rstB gene may be used as a promising selectable marker and an alternative to the antibiotic- or herbicide-resistance genes in plant transformation.