Skip to main content

Crop improvement through tissue culture

Abstract

Plant tissue culture comprises a set of in vitro techniques, methods and strategies that are part of the group of technologies called plant biotechnology. Tissue culture has been exploited to create genetic variability from which crop plants can be improved, to improve the state of health of the planted material and to increase the number of desirable germplasms available to the plant breeder. Tissue-culture protocols are available for most crop species, although continued optimization is still required for many crops, especially cereals and woody plants. Tissueculture techniques, in combination with molecular techniques, have been successfully used to incorporate specific traits through gene transfer. In vitro techniques for the culture of protoplasts, anthers, microspores, ovules and embryos have been used to create new genetic variation in the breeding lines, often via haploid production. Cell culture has also produced somaclonal and gametoclonal variants with crop-improvement potential. The culture of single cells and meristems can be effectively used to eradicate pathogens from planting material and thereby dramatically improve the yield of established cultivars. Large-scale micropropagation laboratories are providing millions of plants for the commercial ornamental market and the agricultural, clonally-propagated crop market. With selected laboratory material typically taking one or two decades to reach the commercial market through plant breeding, this technology can be expected to have an ever increasing impact on crop improvement as we approach the new millenium.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

References

  • Akagi, H., Sakamoto, M., Negishi, T. & Fujimura, T. 1989 Construction of rice cybrid plants. Molecular General Genetics 215, 501–506.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ammirato, P.V. 1983 Embryogenesis. In Handbook of Plant Cell Culture, Vol. 1, eds Evans, D.A., Sharp, W.R., Ammirato, P.V. & Yamada, Y. pp. 82–123. New York: Macmillan.

    Google Scholar 

  • Anon. 1994 General Questions and Answers on Biotechnology. Ottawa: Food Protection and Inspection Branch, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

  • Atanassov, A., Zagorska, N., Boyadjiev, P. & Djilianov, D. 1995 In vitro production of haploid plants. World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology 11, 400–408.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bajaj, Y.P.S. (ed) 1989 Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vols 8 and 9: Plant Protoplasts and Genetic Engineering. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bajaj, Y.P.S. 1990 In vitro production of haploids and their use in cell genetics and plant breeding. In Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 12, ed Bajaj, Y.P.S. pp. 3–44. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bajaj, Y.P.S. (ed) 1991a Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 17: High-Tech and Micropropagation 1. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bajaj, Y.P.S. 1991b Storage and cryopreservation of in vitro cultures In Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 1: High-Tech and Micropropagation I, ed Bajaj, Y.P.S., pp. 361–381. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bajaj, Y.P.S. (ed) 1992a Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 18: High-Tech and Micropropagation II. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bajaj, Y.P.S. (ed) 1992b Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 19: High-Tech and Micropropagation III. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bajaj, Y.P.S. (ed) 1992c Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 20: High-Tech and Micropropagation IV. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bodde, T. 1982 Genetic engineering in agriculture: another green revolution. BioScience 32, 572–575.

    Google Scholar 

  • Bhojwani, S.S. & Razdan, M.K. 1983 Plant Tissue Culture: Theory and Practice. Developments in Crop Science, Vol. 5. Amsterdam: Elsevier.

    Google Scholar 

  • Boxus, P. 1976 Rapid production of virus free strawberry in in vitro culture. Acta Horticulturae 66, 35–38.

    Google Scholar 

  • Brown, D.C.W., Finstad, K.I. & Watson, E.M. 1995 Somatic embryogenesis in herbaceous dicots. In In Vitro Embryogenesis in Plants, ed Thorpe, T.A. pp. 345–415. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Choo, T.M., Ho, K.M., Konishi, T. & Martin, R.A. 1992 Tests for randomness among doubled-haploid lines derived by the bulbosum method in barley Hordeum vulgare L. Sabrao Journal 24, 87–92.

    Google Scholar 

  • Collins, G.B. & Grosser, J.W. 1984 Culture of Embryos. In Cell Culture and Somatic Cell Genetics of Plants, Vol. 1, ed Vasil, I.K. pp. 241–257. New York: Academic Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Davis, J. & Reznikoff, W.S. 1992 Milestones in Biotechnology: Classic Papers on Genetic Engineering. Boston: Butterworth-Heinemann.

    Google Scholar 

  • Debergh, P.C. & Zimmerman, R.H. (eds) 1991 Micropropagation. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Deunff, Y.L. 1993 Conclusions and future. In Synseeds: Applications of Synthetic Seeds to Crop Improvement, ed Redenbaugh, K. pp. 453–561. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dore, C. 1990 Asparagus anther culture and field trials of dihaploids and f1 hybrids. In Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 12, ed Bajaj, Y.P.S. pp. 322–345. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Douglas, G.C., Keller, W.A. & Setterfield, G. 1981a Somatic hydridization between Nicotiana rustica and N. tabacum. I. Isolation and culture of protoplasts and regeneration of plants from cell cultures of wild-type and chlorophyll-deficient strains. Canadian Journal of Botany 59, 208–219.

    Google Scholar 

  • Douglas, G.C., Keller, W.A. & Setterfield, G. 1981b Somatic hybridization between Nicotiana rustica and N. tabacum. II. Protoplast fusion and selection and regeneration of hybrid plants. Canadian Journal of Botany 59, 220–227.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dunstan, D.I., Tautorus, T.E. & Thorpe, T.A. 1995 Somatic embryogenesis in woody plants. In In Vitro Embryogenesis in Plants, ed Thorpe, T.A. pp. 473–539. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Evans, D.A. & Bravo, J.E. 1983 Protoplast fusion. In Handbook of Plant Cell Culture, Vol. 1, eds Evans, D.A., Sharp, W.R., Ammirato, P.V. & Yamada, Y. pp. 291–321. New York: Macmillan.

    Google Scholar 

  • Evans, D.A. & Bravo, J.E. 1988 Agricultural applications of protoplast fusion. In Plant Biotechnology, ed Marby, T.J. pp. 51–91. Austin: IC2 Institute, University of Texas.

    Google Scholar 

  • Evans, D.A., Sharpe, W.R. & Bravo, J.E. 1984 Cell culture methods for crop improvement. In Handbook of Plant Cell Culture, Vol. 2, eds Sharp, W.R., Evans, D.A., Ammirato, P.V. & Yamada, Y. pp. 393–441. New York: Macmillan.

    Google Scholar 

  • Feher, A. & Dudits, D. 1994 Plant protoplasts and cell fusion and direct DNA uptake: culture and regeneration systems. In Plant Cell and Tissue Culture, eds Vasil, I.K. & Thorpe, T.A. pp. 71–118. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gamborg, O.L., Shylak, J.P. & Shahin, E.A. 1981 Isolation, fusion, and culture of plant protoplasts. In Plant Tissue Culture: Methods and Applications in Agriculture, ed Thorpe, T.A. pp. 115–153. New York: Academic Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gleddie, S., Keller, W.A. & Setterfield, G. 1983 Somatic hybridization between Nicotiana rustica and N. sylvestris. Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture 2, 269–283.

    Google Scholar 

  • Gleddie, S., Keller, W.A. & Setterfield, G. 1986 Production and characterization of somatic hybrids between Solanum melongena and S. sisymbriifolium Lam. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 71, 613–621.

    Google Scholar 

  • Harry, I.S. & Thorpe, T.A. 1991 Tissue cultures: in vitro biosphere reserves. Nature and Resources 27, 18–22.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hinchee, M.A.W., Corbin, D.R., Armstrong, C.L., Fry, J.E., Sato, S.S., Deboer, D.L., Petersen, W.L., Armstrong, T.A., Connor-Wand, D.V., Layton, J.G. & Horsch, R.B. 1994 Plant transformation. In Plant Cell and Tissue Culture, eds Vasil, I.K. & Thorpe, T.A. pp. 231–270. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Ho, K.M. & Kasha, K.J. 1975 Genetic control of chromosome elimination during haploid formation in barley. Genetics 8, 263–275.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hu, H. & Zeng, J.Z. 1984 Development of new varieties via anther culture. In Handbook of Plant Cell Culture, Vol. 3, eds Ammirato, P.V., Evans, D.A., Sharp, W.R. & Yamada, Y. pp. 65–90. New York: Macmillan.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kao, H.M., Brown, G.G., Scoles, G. & Seguin-Swartz, G. 1991 Ogura cytoplasmic male sterility and triazine tolerant Brassica napus cv. Westar produced by protoplast fusion. Plant Science 75, 63–72.

    Google Scholar 

  • Karp, A. 1994 Origins, causes and uses of variation in plant tissue cultures. In Plant Cell and Tissue Culture, eds Vasil, I.K. & Thorpe, T.A. pp. 139–151. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kartha, K.K. 1981 Meristem culture and cryopreservation—methods and applications. In Plant Tissue Culture: Methods and Applications in Agriculture, ed Thorpe, T.A. pp. 181–211. New York: Academic Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kasha, K.J. & Kao, K.N. 1970 High frequency haploid production in barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). Nature 225, 874–876.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kleese, R.A. & Duvick, D.N. 1980 In Genetic Improvement of Crops: Emergent Techniques, eds Rubenstein, I., Gengenbach, B., Phillips, R.L., Green, C.E. pp. 24–43. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota.

    Google Scholar 

  • KrishnaRaj, S. & Vasil, I.K. 1995 Somatic embryogenesis in herbaceous monocots. In In Vitro Embryogenesis in Plants, ed Thorpe, T.A. pp. 417–471. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kuckuck, H., Kobabe, G. & Wenzel, G. 1991 Fundamentals of Plant Breeding. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Lal, R. & Lal, S. 1990 Crop Improvement Using Biotechnology. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Larkin, P.J. & Scowcroft, W.R. 1981 Somaclonal variation—a novel source of variability from cell culture for plant improvement. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 60, 197–214.

    Google Scholar 

  • Larkin, P.J., Brettell, R.I.S., Ryan, S.A., Davies, P.A., Pallotta, M.A. & Scowcroft, W.R. 1985 Somaclonal variation: impact on plant biology and breeding strategies. In Biotechnology in Plant Science, eds Day, P., Zaitlin, M. & Hollaender, A. pp. 83–100. New York: Academic Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Maheshwari, P. & Rangaswamy, N.S. 1965 Embryology in relation to physiology and genetics. Advances in Botanical Research 2, 218–321.

    Google Scholar 

  • Morrison, R.A. & Evans, D.A. 1988 Staploid plants from tissue culture: new plant varieties in a shortened time frame. Bio/ Technology 6, 684–690.

    Google Scholar 

  • Murashige, T. 1990 Plant propagation by tissue culture: a practice with unrealized potential. In Handbook of Plant Cell Culture, Vol. 5: Ornamental Plants, eds Ammirato, P.V., Evans, D.A., Sharp, W.R. & Bajaj, Y.P.S. pp. 3–9. New York: McGraw Hill.

    Google Scholar 

  • O'Riordain, F. 1994 COST 87 Directory of European Plant Tissue Culture Laboratories 1993. Brussels: Commission of the European Communities.

    Google Scholar 

  • Palmer, C.E. & Keller, W.A. 1994 In vitro culture of oilseeds. In Plant Cell and Tissue Culture, eds Vasil, I.K. & Thorpe, T.A. pp. 413–455. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pandeya, R.S., Douglas, G.C., Keller, W.A., Setterfield, G. & Patrick, Z.A. 1986 Somatic hybridization between Nicotiana rustica and N. tabacum: development of tobacco breeding strains with disease resistance and elevated nicotine content. Zeitschrift für Pflanzenzüchtung 96, 346–352.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pandeya, R.S. & White, F.H. 1994 Delgold: a new flue-cured tobacco. Canadian Journal of Plant Science 64, 233–236.

    Google Scholar 

  • Plucknett, D.L. & Smith, N.J.H. 1986 Sustaining agricultural yields. BioScience 36, 40–45.

    Google Scholar 

  • Raghavan, V. 1980 Embryo culture. International Reviews of Cytology Supplement 11B, 209–240.

    Google Scholar 

  • Raghavan, V. 1994 In vitro methods for the control of fertilization and embryo development. In Plant Cell and Tissue Culture, eds Vasil, I.K. & Thorpe, T.A. pp. 173–194. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Randolph, L.F. 1945 Embryo culture of Iris seeds. Bulletin of the American Iris Society 97, 33–45.

    Google Scholar 

  • Redenbaugh, K. (ed) 1993 Synseeds: Applications of Synthetic Seeds to Crop Improvement. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sanada, M., Sakamoto, Y., Hayashi, M., Mashiko, T., Okamoto, A. & Ohnishi, N. 1993 Celery and lettuce. In Synseeds: Applications of Synthetic Seeds to Crop Improvement, ed Redenbaugh, K. pp. 305–327. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sasson, A. 1993 Biotechnologies in Developing Countries: Present and Future, Vol. 1. Paris: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

    Google Scholar 

  • Schieder, O. & Kohn, H. 1986 Protoplast fusion and generation of somatic hybrids. In Cell Culture and Somatic Cell Genetics of Plants, Vol. 3, ed Vasil, I.K. pp. 569–588. New York: Academic Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Scowcroft, W.R., Brettell, R.I.S., Ryan, S.A., Davies, P.A. & Pallotta, M.A. 1987 Somaclonal variation and genomic flux. In Plant Tissue and Cell Culture, eds Green, C.E., Somers, D.A., Hackett, W.P. & Bisboer, D.D. pp. 275–286. New York: A.R. Liss.

    Google Scholar 

  • Singh, R.B. 1992 Current status and future prospects of plant biotechnologies in developing countries in Asia. In Plant Biotechnologies for Developing Countries, eds Sasson, A. & Costarini, V. pp. 141–162. London: Chayce Publication Services.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sproule, A., Donaldson, P., Dijak, M., Bevis, E., Pandeya, R., Keller, W.A. & Gleddie, S. 1991 Fertile somatic hybrids between transgenic Nicotiana tabacum and transgenic N. debneyi selected by dual antibiotic resistance. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 82, 450–456.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tanno-Suenaga, L., Ichikawa, H. & Imamura, J. 1988 Transfer of CMS trait in Daucus carota L. by donor-recipient protoplast fusion. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 76, 855–860.

    Google Scholar 

  • Thompson, M.R. & Thorpe, T.A. 1990 Biochemical perspectives in tissue culture for crop improvement. In Biochemical Aspects of Crop Improvement, ed Khanna, K.R. pp. 327–358. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Thorpe, T.A. 1990 The current status of plant tissue culture. In Plant Tissue Culture: Applications and Limitations, ed Bhojwani, S.S. pp. 1–33. Amsterdam: Elsevier.

    Google Scholar 

  • Tilton, V.R. & Russel, S.H. 1984 Applications of in vitro pollination/fertilization technology. BioScience 34, 239–241.

    Google Scholar 

  • Vardi, A., Arzee-Goren, P., Frydman-Shani, A., Bleichman, S. and Galun, E. 1989 Protoplast fusion-mediated transfer of organelles from Microcitrus into Citrus and regeneration of novel alloplasmic trees. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 78, 741–747.

    Google Scholar 

  • Vasil, I.K. & Thorpe, T.A. (eds) 1994 Plant Cell and Tissue Culture. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic.

    Google Scholar 

  • Villalobos, V.M. & Engelmann, F. 1995 Ex situ conservation of plant germplasm using biotechnology. World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology 11, 375–382.

    Google Scholar 

  • Wang, P.-J. & Charles, A. 1991 Micropropagation through meristem culture. In Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol. 17: High-Tech and Micropropagation I, ed Bajaj, Y.P.S. pp. 32–52. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

    Google Scholar 

  • Yeung, E.C., Thorpe, T.A. & Jensen, C.L. 1981 In vitro fertilization and embryo rescue. In Plant Tissue Culture: Methods and Applications in Agriculture, ed Thorpe, T.A. pp. 253–271. New York: Academic Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Zapata-Arias, F.J., Torrizo, L.B. & Ando, A. Current developments in plant biotechnology for genetic improvement: the case of rice (Oryza sativa L.) World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology 11, 393–399.

  • Zenkteler, M. 1984 In-vitro fertilization and fertilization. In Cell Culture and Somatic Cell Genetics of Plants, Vol. 1. ed Vasil, I.K. pp. 269–275. New York: Academic Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Zenkteler, M. 1990 In vitro fertilization and wide hybridization in higher plants. CRC Critical Reviews in Plant Science 9, 267–279.

    Google Scholar 

  • Zhong, J.-J., Yu, J.-T. & Yoshida, T. 1995 Recent advances in plant cell cultures in bioreactors. World Journal of Microbiology & Biotechnology 11, 461–467.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Authors

Additional information

D.C.W. Brown is with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Central Experimental Farm, Plant Research Centre, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0C6, Canada. T.A. Thorpe is with the Plant Physiology Research Group, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, T2N 1N4, Canada

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Brown, D.C.W., Thorpe, T.A. Crop improvement through tissue culture. World Journal of Microbiology & Biotechnology 11, 409–415 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00364616

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00364616

Key words

  • Breeding
  • embryo culture
  • haploids
  • micropropagation
  • protoplasts
  • synthetic seed
  • transformation
  • wide hybridization