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Shu H.,Chinese Academy of Sciences | Shu H.,The key Laboratory of Hainan banana genetics and breeding | Shu H.,Zhengzhou University | Xu L.,Chinese Academy of Sciences | And 7 more authors.
Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology | Year: 2014

Banana is an important tropical fruit worldwide. Parthenocarpy and female sterility made it impossible to improve banana varieties through common hybridization. Genetic transformation for banana improvement is imperative. But the low rate that banana embryogenic callus was induced made the transformation cannot be performed in many laboratories. Finding ways to promote banana somatic embryogenesis is critical for banana genetic transformation. After tobacco arabinogalactan protein gene NtEPc was transformed into Escherichia coli (DE3), the recombinant protein was purified and filter-sterilized. A series of the sterilized protein was added into tissue culture medium. It was found that the number of banana immature male flowers developing embryogenic calli increased significantly in the presence of NtEPc protein compared with the effect of the control medium. Among the treatments, explants cultured on medium containing 10 mg/l of NtEPc protein had the highest chance to develop embryogenic calli. The percentage of lines that developed embryogenic calli on this medium was about 12.5 %. These demonstrated that NtEPc protein can be used to promote banana embryogenesis. This is the first paper that reported that foreign arabinogalactan protein (AGP) could be used to improve banana somatic embryogenesis. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Chang S.,Chinese Academy of Sciences | Chang S.,The Key Laboratory of Hainan Banana Genetics and Breeding | Wei F.,Zhengzhou University | Yang Y.,Zhengzhou University | And 11 more authors.
Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology | Year: 2015

Tobacco is an ideal plant for modification to remove mercury from soil. Although several transgenic tobacco strains have been developed, they either release elemental mercury directly into the air or are only capable of accumulating small quantities of mercury. In this study, we constructed two transgenic tobacco lines: Ntk-7 (a tobacco plant transformed with merT-merP-merB1-merB2-ppk) and Ntp-36 (tobacco transformed with merT-merP-merB1-merB2-pcs1). The genes merT, merP, merB1, and merB2 were obtained from the well-known mercury-resistant bacterium Pseudomonas K-62. Ppk is a gene that encodes polyphosphate kinase, a key enzyme for synthesizing polyphosphate in Enterobacter aerogenes. Pcs1 is a tobacco gene that encodes phytochelatin synthase, which is the key enzyme for phytochelatin synthesis. The genes were linked with LP4/2A, a sequence that encodes a well-known linker peptide. The results demonstrate that all foreign genes can be abundantly expressed. The mercury resistance of Ntk-7 and Ntp-36 was much higher than that of the wild type whether tested with organic mercury or with mercuric ions. The transformed plants can accumulate significantly more mercury than the wild type, and Ntp-36 can accumulate more mercury from soil than Ntk-7. In mercury-polluted soil, the mercury content in Ntp-36’s root can reach up to 251 μg/g. This is the first report to indicate that engineered tobacco can not only accumulate mercury from soil but also retain this mercury within the plant. Ntp-36 has good prospects for application in bioremediation for mercury pollution. © 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

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