A Mutational Approach to the Study of Photorespiration
The ideal situation for applying a somatic cell genetics approach to a pathway present in cells of higher plants is the study of a pathway well defined in terms of the biochemistry of synthesis and regulation. This condition has been most nearly approached where bacterial and fungal systems have provided a model, as in selections for overproduction of aspartate-derived amino acids in rice (1) [ also proposed for corn (2) ] and for tryptophan pathway studies (3). However, the area of photosynthesis and photorespiration presents special problems (and opportunities) for a microbial genetics approach. The genetically best known microorganisms do not photosynthesize, and photosynthetic bacteria or even algae do not provide a high-fidelity model for the biochemical and genetic study of photorespiration in plants. In plants, we have not reached an understanding of some of the fundamental aspects of the pathway of photorespiration. Under these circumstances we are dependent on the plant mutants which we can obtain, rather than microbial mutants, to elucidate the pathway as well as eventually to provide a new means of regulation.
KeywordsVariant Line Isonicotinic Acid Tobacco Callus Mutational Approach Tobacco Leaf Disc
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