Glutathione provides antioxidative defence and promotes microspore-derived embryo development in isolated microspore cultures of triticale (× Triticosecale Wittm.)

Iwona Żur, Ewa Dubas, Monika Krzewska, Kamil Zieliński, Jozsef Fodor, Franciszek Janowiak

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Key message: Depending on the capability for stress adaptation, the role played by glutathione in microspore embryogenesis consists of both antioxidative activity and stimulation of embryo-like structure development. Abstract: The efficiency of microspore embryogenesis (ME) is determined by the complex network of internal and environmental factors. Among them, the efficient defence against oxidative stress seems to be one of the most important. The present study confirms this hypothesis showing the positive effect of glutathione—the most abundant cellular antioxidant—on ME in isolated microspore cultures of triticale (× Triticosecale Wittm.). For the first time, low temperature (LT) pre-treatment of tillers was combined with the exogenous application of glutathione and associated with the total activity of low-molecular weight antioxidants, the endogenous content and redox status of glutathione, and the effectiveness of ME. The results indicate that efficient antioxidative defence is the first, although not the only, prerequisite for effective ME. In responsive genotypes, LT alone stimulated antioxidative defence and decreased cell redox status, which was associated with increased cell viability and high frequency (ca. 20%) of microspore reprogramming. Application of glutathione had no effect either on the microspore viability or on the initial number of embryogenic microspores. However, it increased the number of embryo-like structures, probably by stimulating the next phases of its development. In recalcitrant genotypes, the main role of glutathione seems to be its participation in cell protection from oxidative stress. However, even enhanced antioxidative activity, which sustained cell viability and increased the number of embryogenic microspores, was insufficient for efficient haploid/doubled haploid plant production. Evidently, there are still other defective elements in the complex network of factors that regulate the process of ME.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-209
Number of pages15
JournalPlant Cell Reports
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 8 2019



  • Antioxidative activity
  • Glutathione
  • Microspore embryogenesis
  • Oxidative stress
  • Triticale

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science

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