Direct sowing of Coffea arabica somatic embryos mass-produced in a bioreactor and regeneration of plants
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The effect of germination conditions on the morphology of Coffea arabica L. somatic embryos mass-produced in a 1-l temporary immersion bioreactor (RITA®) was studied with emphasis on direct sowing in soil. Using germinated embryos, direct sowing resulted in a highly successful conversion of embryos into plants. A culture density above 1600 embryos per 1-l bioreactor positively affected embryo morphology by causing higher embryonic axis elongation (+4–5 mm). At this density, the addition of a high concentration of sucrose (234 mM) 2 weeks before sowing promoted an increase in effective plant conversion in soil (78%) and a vigorous vegetative growth of the resulting plants. Furthermore, direct sowing reduced handling time to 13% and shelving area requirements to 6.3% of the values obtained by conventional acclimatization of plants developed on gel media.
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