The effects of reduced and oxidized glutathione on white spruce somatic embryogenesis



The glutathione-glutathione disulfide redox pair was utilized to improve white spurce somatic embryo development. Mature cotyledonary-stage somatic embryos were divided into two groups (A and B) based on morphological normality and the ability of the mature somatic embryos to convert into plantlets. Group A embryos had four or more cotyledons and converted readily upon germination after a partial drying treatment. Group B embryos had three or fewer cotyledons with a low conversion frequency. The addition of reduced glutathione (GSH) at a concentration of 0.1 mM resulted in an increase in embryo production (total population) with a mean total number of 64 embryos per 100 mg embryogenic tissue as well as an increase in post-embryonic root growth. However, at a higher concentration (1 mM), GSH inhibited embryo formation. The manipulation of the tissue culture environment via the inclusion of glutathione disulfide (GSSG), at concentrations of 0.1 and 1.0 mM, enhanced the development of better-quality embryos. This quality was best exemplified when embryos forming four or more cotyledons increased by at least twofold to 73.9% when treated with 1.0 mM GSSG, compared to 38% in control. Furthermore, this improved quality was reflected by an increased conversion frequency. A 20% increase in the ability of the somatic embryo to produce both root and shoot structures during post-embryonic development was noted when embryos were matured on maturation medium supplemented with 1.0 mM GSSG over the control.

Key words

white spruce somatic embryogenesis reduced glutathione glutathione disulfide 


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Copyright information

© Society for In Vitro Biology 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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