Canadian Forest Service Publications

Hormonally regulated overexpression of Arabidopsis WUS and conifer LEC1 (CHAP3A) in transgenic white spruce: implications for somatic embryo development and somatic seedling growth. 2010. Klimaszewska, K.; Pelletier, G.; Overton, C.; Stewart, D.; Rutledge, R.G. Plant Cell Reports 29: 723-734.

Year: 2010

Issued by: Laurentian Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 31771

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

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Adult conifers are still recalcitrant in clonal propagation despite significant advances in forest tree biotechnology. Plant regeneration through somatic embryogenesis from explants older than mature zygotic embryos is either difficult or impossible to achieve. To investigate if ectopic expression of transcription factors involved in the induction of the embryogenic process would induce somatic embryogenesis in Picea glauca (white spruce) somatic plants, we used the LEAFY-COTYLEDON1 homolog cloned from Picea mariana, CHAP3A, and Arabidopsis thaliana WUS to transform embryonal mass of P. glauca. Ectopic gene expression was induced by 17-B-estradiol during stages of somatic embryogenesis (early embryogenesis and late embryogenesis) and somatic seedling growth in the transgenics. Of the two transcription factors, only WUS produced severe phenotypes by disrupting the development of somatic embryos on the maturation medium and inhibiting germination. However, none of the transgenes induced ectopic somatic embryogenesis even in the presence of plant growth regulators. Absolute quantitative PCR confirmed the expression of both CHAP3A and WUS in transgenic embryonal mass and in all parts of somatic seedlings. A high expression of the transgenes did not influence expression profiles of any of the ten other transcription factors tested, some of which have been known to be involved in the process of embryogenesis. Implications of these results for further work are discussed.