In this study, the morphological and cytoembryological analyses of the tomato plants transformed with the genes encoding chitin-binding proteins (ac and RS-intron-Shir) from Amaranthus caudatus L. and A. retroflexus L., respectively, as well as the gene amp2 encoding hevein-like antimicrobial peptides from Stellaria media L., have been performed. The transgenic lines were adapted to soil and grown in the greenhouse. The analysis of putative transgenic tomato plants revealed several lines that did not differ phenotypically from the wild type plants and three lines with disruption in differentiation of the inflorescence shoot and the flower, as well as the fruit formation (modified plants of each line were transformed with a single gene as noted before). Abnormalities in the development of the generative organs were maintained for at least six vegetative generations. These transgenic plants were shown to be defective in the mail gametophyte formation, fertilization, and, consequently, led to parthenocarpic fruits. The detailed analysis of growing ovules in the abnormal transgenic plants showed that the replacement tissue was formed and proliferated instead of unfertilized embryo sac. The structure of the replacement tissue differed from both embryonic and endosperm tissue of the normal ovule. The formation of the replacement tissue occurred due to continuing proliferation of the endothelial cells that lost their ability for differentiation. The final step in the development of the replacement tissue was its death, which resulted in the cell lysis. The expression of the genes used was confirmed by RTPCR in all three lines with abnormal phenotype, as well as in several lines that did not phenotypically differ from the untransformed control. This suggests that abnormalities in the organs of the generative sphere in the transgenic plants do not depend on the expression of the foreign genes that were introduced in the tomato genome. Here, we argue that agrobacterial transformation affects, directly or indirectly, expression of genes encoding for transcription factors that can activate a gene cascade responsible for the normal plant development.
Russian Journal of Developmental Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 28, 2014
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