Botany and Plant Pathology Seminar Series
Speaker: Dr. Stan Gelvin - Department of Biology - Purdue University
Topic: Manipulating the plant genome to enhance Agrobacterium-mediated plant genomic transformation
When: Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:30 pm in WSLR 116

Agrobacterium-mediated plant transformation is a core technology for both plant molecular sciences and for agricultural biotechnology.  Although Agrobacterium-mediated transformation has been used to generate transgenic plants for more than 25 years, many agronomically important species, or particular genotypes of these species, remain recalcitrant to transformation.  Scientists have increased transformation frequency by manipulating tissue culture conditions and by developing highly virulent Agrobacterium strains.  As an additional approach, we have investigated plant genes and proteins important for plant transformation susceptibility.  By characterizing Arabidopsis mutants that are either resistant or hypersusceptible to Agrobacterium transformation (rat or hat mutants), we have identified a large number of host genes involved in the transformation process.  In some cases, overexpressing these “transformation genes” can increase transformation frequency, even in heterologous plant species such as rice.  I shall describe how we identified and characterized these genes.  In particular, I shall describe a plant myb transcription factor that is a negative global regulator of transformation.  Manipulation of this myb gene may enhance transformation susceptibility of important crop species. 


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