Timely removal of exogenous cytokinin and the prevention of auxin transport from the shoot to the root affect the regeneration potential of Arabidopsis roots

Dóra Bernula, Péter Benkő, Nikolett Kaszler, Ildikó Domonkos, Ildikó Valkai, Réka Szőllősi, Györgyi Ferenc, Ferhan Ayaydin, Attila Fehér, Katalin Gémes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In vitro regeneration of Arabidopsis from roots is generally achieved via indirect organogenesis. First, transdifferentiation of lateral root primordia to calli is achieved by a balanced auxin-to-cytokinin ratio that is followed by the induction of shoot meristem formation using a high cytokinin level. Here we demonstrate that if the root explants were transferred onto a hormone-free medium after a transient (4-days) cytokinin treatment, embryogenic marker genes (LEC1, LEC2, FUS3) started to be expressed. App. 50% of the regeneration foci developed into plantlets with trichome-less cotyledon-like leaves. Moreover, the somatic embryogenesis defective lec1 mutant could regenerate only shoots with trichome-bearing leaves under this condition. Based on these observations, the mixed accomplishment of shoot organogenesis and somatic embryogenesis is hypothesized in the Arabidopsis root explants cultured under hormone-free conditions following cytokinin induction. Using whole seedlings instead of root explants in the same experimental set up, no regenerates were formed on the roots. Applying the auxin transport inhibitor TIBA to the root-to-shoot junction of the seedlings, the regeneration ability of the root could be restored. The observations indicate that shoot-derived endogenous auxin blocks the cytokinin-induced regeneration process in the roots of whole seedlings. The expression of the wound-induced transcription factor WIND1 could be detected in the roots of unwounded seedlings if the shoot-to-root auxin transport was inhibited. Manipulating the exogenous cytokinin level together with the endogenous shoot-to-root auxin transport therefore could mimic the effect of wounding (removal of shoot) on plant regeneration from roots.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-339
Number of pages13
JournalPlant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2020



  • Arabidopsis thaliana
  • Auxin transport inhibition
  • Cytokinin
  • Root explant
  • Shoot regeneration
  • Somatic embryogenesis
  • Wounding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Horticulture

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