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The role of bacterial attachment in the transformation of cell-wall-regenerating tobacco protoplasts by Agrobacterium tumefaciens

F.A. Krens, L. Molendijk, G.J. Wullems and R.A. Schilperoort
Planta
Vol. 166, No. 3 (1985), pp. 300-308
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23377839
Page Count: 9
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The role of bacterial attachment in the transformation of cell-wall-regenerating tobacco protoplasts by Agrobacterium tumefaciens
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Abstract

The presence of a newly formed primary cell wall was shown to be required for attachment and subsequent transformation of tobacco leaf protoplasts by Agrobacterium tumefaciens in co-cultivation experiments. In these experiments both protoplasts at different stages after their isolation and cell-wall inhibitors were used. The specificity of Agrobacterium attachment was shown by using other kinds of bacteria that did not attach. By diminishing the concentration of divalent cations using ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid, neither attachment nor transformation was found; however, when more specifically the Ca2+concentration was lowered by ethylene glycol-bis (β-aminoethyl ether)-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid, both phenomena occurred. Commercial lectins had no effect on binding, but this observation does not exclude the involvement of other lectins. Protoplasts isolated from various crown-gall callus tissues also developed binding sites, but when they were at the stage of dividing cells, attachment of agrobacteria was no longer observed. In this respect, cells from protoplasts of normal tobacco leaves behaved differently. Even 16 d after protoplast isolation, the dividing cells were still able to bind A. tumefaciens, while transformation was not detected. For transformation of 3-d-old tobacco protoplasts, a minimal co-cultivation period of 24 h was required, while optimal attachment took place within 5 h. It is concluded that the primary cell wall was sufficiently well formed that certain functional receptor molecules were available for attachment of Agrobacterium as the first step of a multistep process leading to the transformation of cells. The expression of bacterial functions required for attachment, moreover, was independent of the presence of Ti-plasmid.

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