Plant grafting: how genetic exchange promotes vascular reconnection

New Phytol. 2017 Apr;214(1):56-65. doi: 10.1111/nph.14383. Epub 2016 Dec 19.


Grafting has been widely used to improve horticultural traits. It has also served increasingly as a tool to investigate the long-distance transport of molecules that is an essential part for key biological processes. Many studies have revealed the molecular mechanisms of graft-induced phenotypic variation in anatomy, morphology and production. Here, we review the phenomena and their underlying mechanisms by which macromolecules, including RNA, protein, and even DNA, are transported between scions and rootstocks via vascular tissues. We further propose a conceptual framework that characterizes and quantifies the driving mechanisms of scion-rootstock interactions toward vascular reconnection and regeneration.

Keywords: DNA; mRNA; sRNA; phenotypic variation; plant grafting; vascular reconnection.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Epigenesis, Genetic
  • Models, Biological
  • Phenotype
  • Plant Vascular Bundle / genetics*
  • Plants / genetics*
  • RNA, Plant / genetics
  • RNA, Plant / metabolism


  • RNA, Plant