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Artificial seed preparation as the efficient method for storage and production of healthy cultured roots of medicinal plants

Vdovitchenko, M. Yu., Kuzovkina, I. N.
Russian journal of plant physiology 2011 v.58 no.3 pp. 524-530
Ruta graveolens, Scutellaria baicalensis, artificial seeds, encapsulation, gels, medicinal plants, micropropagation, root growth, roots, shoots, storage time, temperature
The technique for the refinement of pRi T-DNA-transformed root cultivation by the root fragment encapsulation in the gel coat, i.e., so-called “artificial seed” (AS) production, was studied. AS were produced from genetically transformed roots of Baikal skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi) and common rue (Ruta graveolens L.). The effects of duration of AS storage at 4°C on their subsequent growth activity and a capability for resumption of actively growing root cultures were analyzed. Encapsulation of contaminated Baikal skullcap root culture with the addition of antibiotic and storage during 2-5 weeks at low above-zero temperature resulted in a complete elimination of infection, i.e., obtaining the healthy root culture. Growth activity and total flavone concentration were markedly increased in this culture, so that total productivity of this renewed root culture increased substantially. Using AS produced from the root fragments of common rue, it was shown that, after long-term storage at low above-zero temperature, they are capable of not only root growth resumption but also active shoot formation, which is of interest for plant micropropagation. Long-term retaining growth activity of AS produced from root cultures of valuable medicinal plants permits their usage as a reserve and also, in the case of necessity, for long-distance transport as compact axenic root inocula. The storage of viable root fragments within AS also helps to optimize intervals between numerous subculturings of root cultures required for the maintenance of IPPRAS collection in the active state.