Submitted to: International Symposium on Tropical and Subtropical Fruits
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/5/2004
Publication Date: 9/12/2004
Citation: He, X., Miyasaka, S.C., Fitch, M.M., Zhu, J.Y., Moore, P.H. 2004. Toward improved fungal resistance in taro through genetic transformation. Abstracts 3rd International Symposium on Tropical and Subtropical Fruits: Abstract P19, p76. Interpretive Summary: Abstract Only
Technical Abstract: Taro [Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott] is one of the most important food crops in many Pacific Islands in the tropical region, and it has grown widely throughout Africa, Asia, the West Indies and South America. Phytophthora leaf blight, caused by Phytophthora colocasiae is the major fungal disease causing production losses of taro. To improve the taro disease resistance, a genetic transformation and regeneration system for taro has been developed. In this report, we will present our research on improving fungal resistance in taro through genetic engineering approach. A rice chitinase gene (CHI11) in a plasmid vector (pBI121) was introduced into taro calli using biolistic particle bombardment. Highly regenerative taro calli of cv. Bun Long were used as targets of bombardment. Bombarded calli were selected on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium containing 2 mg L-1 BA, 1 mg L-1 NAA and 50 mg L-1 geneticin (G418). The candidate transgenic calli were screened by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification using a primer set for the CHI11 gene. Shoots were regenerated from PCR positive calli and screened by PCR amplification again. The presence of CHI11 transgene was further confirmed by Southern blot analysis. The transgenic plant lines were propagated for fungal disease resistance assays. Preliminary result of fungal resistance bioassay will be reported.