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Plant Physiol. 1996 Oct;112(2):493-502.

Expression of the Agrobacterium rhizogenes rolC Gene in a Deciduous Forest Tree Alters Growth and Development and Leads to Stem Fasciation.

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Department of Forest Genetics and Plant Physiology, The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, S-901 83 Umea, Sweden (O.N., T.M., B.S., G.S).


We have altered the growth and development of a deciduous forest tree by transforming hybrid aspen (Populus tremula x Populus tremuloides) with the Agrobacterium rhizogenes rolC gene expressed under the strong cauliflower mosaic virus 35S promoter. We demonstrate that the genetically manipulated perennial plants, after a period of dormancy, maintain the induced phenotypical changes during the second growing period. Furthermore, mass-spectrometrical quantifications of the free and conjugated forms of indole-3-acetic acid and cytokinins and several gibberellins on one transgenic line correlate the induced developmental alterations such as stem fasciation to changes in plant hormone metabolism. We also show that the presence of the RolC protein increases the levels of the free cytokinins, but not by a process involving hydrolysis of the inactive cytokinin conjugates.

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