A simple and inexpensive particle bombardment device was constructed for delivery of DNA to plant cells. The Particle Inflow Gun (PIG) is based on acceleration of DNA-coated tungsten particles using pressurized helium in combination with a partial vacuum. The particles are accelerated directly in a helium stream rather than being supported by a macrocarrier. Bombardment parameters were partially optimized using transient expression assays of a ß-glucuronidase gene in maize embryogenic suspension culture and cowpea leaf tissues. High levels of transient expression of the ß-glucuronidase gene were obtained following bombardment of embryogenic suspension cultures of corn and soybean, and leaf tissue of cowpea. Stable transformation of embryogenic tissue of soybean has also been obtained using this bombardment apparatus.