High frequency of adventitious shoot regeneration from commercial cultivars of evening primrose (Oenothera spp.) using thidiazuron

E. M. De Gyves, C. A. Sparks, A. F. Fieldsend, P. A. Lazzeri, H. D. Jones

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24 Citations (SciVal)


Evening primrose (Oenothera spp.) is grown commercially for its seed oil that contains gamma linolenic acid (GLA), a valuable food supplement and pharmaceutical. There is considerable interest in the potential of genetic engineering to improve yields of GLA in evening primrose, and attention has focused on the current state of tissue-culture knowledge in this species which is a prerequisite for genetic transformation. Published protocols for the regeneration of plants from leaf or cotyledon material of Oenothera spp. are available, but these prove unsatisfactory when applied to commercial cultivars used in this study. An efficient method for regenerating three commercial cultivars of evening primrose Rigel, Merlin and Vulcan was developed using thidiazuron (TDZ) as a growth regulator. Explants from one month old seedlings were cultivated in vitro; a large number of buds were induced directly from strips of leaves, cotyledons and stems when cultured on Murashige and Skoog (MS) basal medium containing TDZ and indole-butyric acid (IBA). Shoots that were excised and placed onto MS basal medium, supplemented with IBA, rooted with 85-90% efficiency. Plantlets were transferred to soil after 6-8 wk. TDZ stimulated the regeneration process, and its effects were enhanced when combined with IBA or indole-3-acetic acid (IAA). The methods developed may be a useful advance toward improvement of this oil seed crop through genetic modification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-332
Number of pages4
JournalAnnals of Applied Biology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2001


  • evening primrose
  • Oenothera spp.
  • plant regeneration
  • genetic transformation
  • thidiazuron


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