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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1985 Oct;82(20):6960-4.

Interspecific chloroplast recombination in a Nicotiana somatic hybrid.

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  • 1Institute of Plant Physiology, Biological Research Center, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Szeged, Hungary 6701.


Genetic recombination between chloroplasts of two flowering plant species, Nicotiana tabacum and Nicotiana plumbaginifolia, after somatic cell fusion is described. The parental lines differed in three cytoplasmic genetic markers. The N. tabacum mutant SR1-A15 was streptomycin-resistant, defective in chloroplast greening, and lincomycin-sensitive. The N. plumbaginifolia mutant LR400 was streptomycin-sensitive, normal green, and lincomycin-resistant. Streptomycin-resistant clones in cell culture are identified by their ability to form a green callus on a selective medium. Streptomycin resistance in the SR1-A15 mutant could not be expressed due to defective chloroplasts. Protoplasts of the two species were fused, and calli grown from the fused population were screened for the expression of streptomycin resistance from the SR1-A15 line as the result of interspecific chloroplast recombination. A somatic hybrid, pt14, expressed a new combination of the cytoplasmic genetic markers. In the pt14 chloroplast genome three N. tabacum and four N. plumbaginifolia parent specific restriction sites have been identified, indicating that the pt14 chloroplast genome contains at least six recombination sites.

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