TDZ and 4-CPPU Induce Embryogenic Response on Scalps of Recalcitrant East African Highland Banana

  •  Kassim Sadik    
  •  Geofrey Arinaitwe    
  •  Patrick Rubaihayo    
  •  Settumba Mukasa    


Breeding of banana conventionally is very difficult due to high levels of sterility arising from aneuploidy. Transformation of East African highland banana (EA-AAA banana) has been limited by difficulties in induction of embryogenic callus and/or embryogenic cell suspension (ECS), a requirement for efficient genetic transformation. In this study N-phenyl-N’-1,2,3-thidiazol-5-ylurea (TDZ) and N-(2-chloro-4-pyridyl)-N’-phenylurea (4-CPPU) that are highly active in regulating morphogenesis in tissue culture of many plant species were tested for enhancing embryogenic callus induction in recalcitrant EA-AAA banana through scalps. In vitro derived shoot-tips of banana cultivars Mbwazirume, Mpologoma, Nakabululu, Nakinyika and Nfuuka were subcultured on various combinations of TDZ and 4-CPPU till scalps were formed. In all the cultivars, ideal scalps for callus induction were achieved in over 50% of the shoot-tip cultures within four subculture cycles in the medium containing equal proportions of 9–13 µM of TDZ and 4-CPPU, and 26 µM of each. Embryogenic callus was formed on 2.5–20% of the scalp cultures depending on cultivar and, TDZ and 4-CPPU combination. Cultivars Nakinyika, Nakabululu, Mbwazirume and Nfuuka developed regenerable embryogenic callus. Of the plantlets regenerated 5 out of 12 and 4 out of 5 plantlets of cultivars Nakinyika and Mbwazirume, respectively, developed normal roots and were weaned onto soil. These results suggest that TDZ and 4-CPPU increases embryogenic response from scalps of EA-AAA banana which can enhance their genetic transformation.

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