Maize (Zea mays L.) callus cultures cannot use mannose as a sole carbohydrate source, but can utilize fructose for that purpose. Phosphomannose isomerase (PMI) can convert mannose to fructose. Transgenic maize plants were obtained by selecting polyethylene glycol (PEG)-mediated transformed protoplasts on mannose (20 g/l) containing medium. Transgenic calluses and plants carrying the PMI structural gene, manA, were able to convert mannose to fructose. The PEG-mediated protoplast transformation frequency was 0.06%. Stable transformation was confirmed by PCR, PMI activity, germination tests, and by histochemical staining with 5-bromo-4-chloro-3-indolyl-β-D-glucuronide (X-Gluc). Stable integration of the transgenes into the maize genome was demonstrated in T1 and T2 plants. Results indicate that the mannose selection system can be used for maize PEG-mediated protoplast transformation.
Keywords: Key words Maize; Mannose-selection marker; Protoplast; Transformation.
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