Dennis J. Gray

University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, United States

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Publications (34)76.24 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: This study established an efficient method of regenerating plants of Ficus lyrata and producing purple-leaved F. lyrata plants through genetic transformation using a VvMybA1 gene of grapevine. Ficus lyrata, a species with unique violin- or guitar-shaped leaves, was regenerated from leaf-derived calli cultured on Murashige and Skoog (MS) basal medium supplemented with 4.5 μM N-phenyl-N'-1, 2, 3-thiadiazol-5-yl urea (TDZ) and 0.5 μM α-naphthalene acetic acid (NAA). Leaf discs were inoculated with Agrobacterium tumefaciens strain EHA 105 harboring a binary vector DEAT that contains the VvMybA1 gene and neomycin phosphotransferase (npt II) gene and subsequently cultured on the established regeneration medium supplemented with 100 mg l(-1) kanamycin. Results showed that 87.5 % of the leaf discs produced kanamycin-resistant callus, and 68.8 % of them produced adventitious shoots. Transgenic plants with three leaf colors including green, green-purple, and purple were produced. Regular and quantitative real-time PCR analyses confirmed the integration of transgenes into the host genome. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR analysis indicated that the VvMybA1 gene was responsible for the purple-colored phenotype. Purple-leaved plants with strong color stability grew vigorously in a greenhouse. This study illustrated the feasibility of using a genetically engineered VvMybA1 gene for drastic modification of leaf color of an important woody ornamental plant.
    Plant Cell Reports 08/2013; · 2.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Successful implementation of cisgenic/intragenic/ingenic technology for crop improvement necessitates a better understanding of the function of native promoters for driving desired gene expression in host plant. Although the genome of grapevine (Vitis vinifera) has been determined, efforts to explore promoter resources for the development of cisgenics are still lacking. Particularly, there is a shortage of constitutive promoters for marker and/or target gene expression in this species. In this work, we utilized an anthocyanin-based color histogram analysis method to evaluate quantitatively a large number of promoters for their ability to activate transgene expression. Promoter fragments corresponding to known genes were amplified from various genotypes and used to drive the VvMybA1 gene of 'Merlot' for anthocyanin production in non-pigmented somatic embryo (SE) explants to infer transcriptional activity. Results revealed that among 15 tested promoters belonging to seven ubiquitin genes, at least three promoters generated constitutive activities reaching up to 100% value of the d35S promoter. In particular, the high activity levels of VvUb6-1 and VvUb7-2 promoters were verified by transient GUS quantitative assay as well as stable anthocyanin expression in sepal and corolla of transgenic tobacco. Variations in promoter activity of different ubiquitin genes in grapevine did not correlate with the presence and sizes of 5' UTR intron, but seemed to be related positively and negatively to the number of positive cis-acting elements and root-specific elements respectively. In addition, several of the 13 promoters derived from a PR1 gene and a PAL gene produced a higher basal activity as compared to previously reported inducible promoters and might be useful for further identification of strong inducible promoters. Our study contributed invaluable information on transcriptional activity of many previously uncharacterized native promoters that could be used for genetic engineering of grapevine.
    Plant Science 11/2012; 196:132-42. · 2.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A cotransformation system using somatic embryos was developed to produce grapevines free of selectable marker genes. This was achieved by transforming Vitis vinifera L. "Thompson Seedless" somatic embryos with a mixture of two Agrobacterium strains. The first strain contained a binary plasmid with an egfp gene of interest between the T-DNA borders. The second strain harbored the neomycin phosphotransferase (nptII) gene for positive selection and the cytosine deaminase (codA) gene for negative selection, linked together by a bidirectional dual promoter complex. Our technique included a short positive selection phase of cotransformed somatic embryos on liquid medium containing 100 mg/L kanamycin before subjecting cultures to prolonged negative selection on medium containing 250 mg/L 5-fluorocytosine.
    Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) 01/2012; 847:201-13.
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    ABSTRACT: Protocols for the production and transformation of grapevine embryogenic cultures are described. Embryogenic cultures are initiated from leaves or stamens and pistils and transformed with Agrobacterium containing an enhanced green fluorescent protein/neomycin phosphotransferase II (egfp/nptII) fusion gene. Cultures are transferred to induction medium in the dark for callus formation and proliferation. Resulting cultures are transferred to somatic embryo development medium to induce secondary embryogenesis and formation of transgenic somatic embryos. Transgenic embryos identified on the basis on GFP fluorescence and kanamycin resistance are transferred to germination medium to regenerate transgenic plants. The presence of transgenes in independent plant lines is confirmed by PCR.
    Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) 01/2012; 847:215-25.
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    ABSTRACT: The role of exogenous methyl jasmonate (MeJA) application in moderating in vitro water stress on banana growth was investigated. Shoot tips were treated using various levels (0, 5, 10, 20, 40, 80, 100, 120, 140 and 160 lM) of MeJA before and during the imposition of 30 g L-1 PEG induced water stress in the media. Proliferation rate significantly improved with increasing doses of MeJA up to 80 lM whether the shoot tips were stressed by PEG or unstressed. The same trend was observed in terms of enhanced fresh weight increase and shoot vigour rate under water stress. PEG significantly reduced the relative water content (%) of shoot tips by about 35 % as compared with those of unstressed conditions, while MeJA application up to 40 lM reduced the inhibitory effect of PEG on leaf water loss (%). Shoot tips under water stressed conditions, responded positively to MeJA by exhibiting a significant increase in proline, although increasing levels to 100 lM and higher had no effect. MeJA alleviated the effect of PEG—induced loss of chlorophyll, although it had no additional benefit by altering the dosages. Under water stress, MeJA application up to 40 lM was also effective in reducing oxidative injury as indicated by significant reduction in H2O2 and MDA contents of shoot tips; higher dosages exhibited no further advantageous effect. These results suggested the participation of MeJA in improving drought tolerance of banana and moderating oxidative stress leading to enhanced plant performance.
    Plant Growth Regulation 01/2012; 68:161 - 169. · 1.67 Impact Factor
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    S. A. Dhekney, Z. T. Li, D. J. Gray
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    ABSTRACT: Unopened leaves, petioles and fully opened leaves from micropropagation cultures of five Vitis rotundifolia Michx. varieties were cultured on induction medium to study their embryogenic response. Among the various explants tested, the maximum number of varieties produced embryogenic cultures from unopened leaves followed by fully opened leaves and petioles. Based on morphological differences, two types of embryogenic cultures were identified. Friable cultures typically arose as proembryonic masses (PEM) on induction medium, whereas somatic embryo production without an intervening PEM stage was observed in compact cultures. Of the five varieties tested, the highest frequency of embryogenic response was observed from fully opened leaves of ‘Supreme’ and unopened leaves and petioles of ‘Delicious’. Attempts to initiate suspension cultures from varieties resulted in proliferation and maintenance of ‘Alachua’ and ‘Carlos’ cultures in liquid medium for 16weeks. Embryogenic potential of varieties was studied on cultures growing on embryo development medium. The maximum number of cotyledonary stage somatic embryos from 0.2g proembryonic masses were observed in ‘Carlos’ (379.3) followed by ‘Alachua’ (350.0) and ‘Delicious’ (305.0). Cotyledonary stage somatic embryos germinated when cultured on Murashige and Skoog medium containing 1μM Benzyladenine (BA). Although high embryo germination rates (80–100%) were observed in the varieties tested, plant recovery from germinated somatic embryos ranged from 6–47%. Embryogenic cultures could be maintained on X6 medium and used in genetic engineering studies. KeywordsMuscadine grape–Somatic embryogenesis–Plant tissue culture–Plant regeneration
    Plant Cell Tissue and Organ Culture 01/2011; 105(2):175-180. · 3.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We report the development of a convenient plant-based reporter system to analyze promoters and facilitate selection of genetically engineered plants. The VvMybA1 gene of grapevine (Vitis vinifera L.) regulates the last metabolic step of anthocyanin biosynthesis and its ectopic expression leads to anthocyanin production in otherwise non-pigmented cells. To develop an anthocyanin-based quantitative reporter system, the VvMybA1 gene was isolated from V. vinifera 'Merlot' and placed under control of three promoters to test its ability to distinguish different activity levels. Promoters included a double enhanced CaMV35S (d35S) promoter, a double enhanced CsVMV (dCsVMV) promoter or a bi-directional dual promoter (BDDP), resulting in transformation vectors DAT, CAT and DEAT, respectively. These vectors were introduced into grapevine and tobacco via Agrobacterium-mediated transformation for transient and stable expression analysis. A linear relationship between the mean red brightness (MRB) and optical density (OD) values with a 0.99 regression coefficient was identified in a dilution series of anthocyanin, thus allowing the use of histogram data for non-destructive and real-time assessment of transcriptional activity. Results of histogram-based analysis of color images from transformed grapevine somatic embryos (SE) and various tissues of transgenic tobacco showed a consistent six to sevenfold promoter activity increase of DEAT over DAT. This expression increase was verified by spectroscopic measurement of anthocyanin concentrations in sepal tissue of transgenic tobacco plants. These results were congruent with previously findings of promoter activity derived from GUS fluorometric assay, thus demonstrating for the first time that the VvMybA1 gene could offer a simple, versatile and reliable plant-based alternative for quantitative promoter analysis in plants.
    Transgenic Research 01/2011; 20(5):1087-97. · 2.61 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cisgenic engineering involves isolation and modification of genetic elements from the host genome, which are reinserted to develop plant varieties with improved characteristics. As a first step toward production of fungal-disease resistant cisgenic grapevines, the Vitis vinifera thaumatin-like protein (vvtl-1) gene was isolated from “Chardonnay” and reengineered for constitutive expression. Embryogenic cultures of “Thompson Seedless” were initiated from leaves and transformed with Agrobacterium to regenerate cisgenic VVTL-1 plants. Cisgene presence and copy number were confirmed by PCR and quantitative real-time PCR. Protein expression was measured using ELISA. Among the plant lines tested, two exhibited a 7–10day delay in powdery mildew disease development during greenhouse screening and decreased severity of black rot disease in field tests. Berries exhibited a 42.5% reduction in sour-bunch rot disease incidence compared to non-transformed controls after 3wk of storage at room temperature. Although plants recovered in this study contain viral promoters and reporter/marker genes, this is the first report of a cisgenic approach to obtain broad-spectrum fungal-disease resistance in genetically engineered grapevine. KeywordsEndogenous genes–Genetic transformation–PR-5 group proteins–Somatic embryogenesis
    In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology - Plant 01/2011; 47(4):458-466. · 1.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A functional contribution of pathogenesis-related 1 (PR-1) proteins to host defense has been established. However, systematic investigation of the PR-1 gene family in grapevine (Vitis spp.) has not been conducted previously. Through mining genomic databases, we identified 21 PR-1 genes from the Vitis vinifera genome. Polypeptides encoded by putative PR-1 genes had a signal sequence of about 25 residues and a mature protein of 10.9-29 kDa in size. PR-1 mature proteins contained a highly conserved six-cysteine motif and pI values ranging from 4.6 to 9. A major cluster with 14 PR-1 genes was mapped to a 280-kb region on chromosome 3. One particular PR-1 gene within the cluster encoding a basic-type isoform (pI 7.77), herein named VvPR1b1, was isolated from various genotypes of grapevine (Vitis spp.) for functional studies. Sequence analysis of PCR-amplified DNA revealed that all genotypes contained a single VvPR1b1 gene except for a broad-spectrum bacterial and fungal disease resistant Florida bunch grape hybrid, 'BN5-4', from which seven different homologues were identified. Duplication of VvPR1b1-related genes encoding acidic-type PR-1 isoforms was also observed among several genotypes. However, transgenic expression analysis of grapevine PR-1 genes under strong constitutive promoters in transgenic tobacco revealed that only the basic-type VvPR1b1 gene duplicated in 'BN5-4' was capable of conferring high level resistance to bacterial disease caused by Pseudomonas syringae pv. tabaci.
    Plant Cell Reports 10/2010; 30(1):1-11. · 2.51 Impact Factor
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    S A Dhekney, Z T Li, M Dutt, D J Gray
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    ABSTRACT: A method to produce transgenic plants of Vitis rotundifolia was developed. Embryogenic cultures were initiated from leaves of in vitro grown shoot cultures and used as target tissues for Agrobacterium-mediated genetic transformation. A green fluorescent protein/neomycin phosphotransferase II (gfp/nptII) fusion gene that allowed for simultaneous selection of transgenic cells based on GFP fluorescence and kanamycin resistance was used to optimize parameters influencing genetic transformation. It was determined that both proembryonal masses (PEM) and mid-cotyledonary stage somatic embryos (SE) were suitable target tissues for co-cultivation with Agrobacterium as evidenced by transient GFP expression. Kanamycin at 100 mg l(-1) in the culture medium was effective in suppression of non-transformed tissue and permitting the growth and development of transgenic cells, compared to 50 or 75 mg l(-1), which permitted the proliferation of more non-transformed cells. Transgenic plants of "Alachua" and "Carlos" were recovered after secondary somatic embryogenesis from primary SE explants co-cultivated with Agrobacterium. The presence and stable integration of transgenes in transgenic plants was confirmed by PCR and Southern blot hybridization. Transgenic plants exhibited uniform GFP expression in cells of all plant tissues and organs including leaves, stems, roots, inflorescences and the embryo and endosperm of developing berries.
    Plant Cell Reports 06/2008; 27(5):865-72. · 2.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: An improved protocol for efficient Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of grapevine (Vitis sp.) was developed through modification of cocultivation and subsequent washing procedures. It was determined that Agrobacterium-infected somatic embryos (SE) cocultivated on filter paper exhibited less browning and significantly higher transient GFP and GUS expression than those cultured on agar-solidified medium. Furthermore, such SE, when subjected to a prolonged washing period in liquid medium containing cefotaxime and carbenicillin, followed by another wash in similar medium with kanamycin added, exhibited significantly higher rates of stable transformation compared to previously-described procedures. Transgenic plant recovery was increased 3.5–6 Xs by careful excision of leafy cotyledons from SE that had been induced to germinate on MS medium containing 1μM of BA. Southern blot analysis revealed the low copy number integration of transgenes in transgenic plants recovered using the improved protocol. These improved cocultivation and plant recovery procedures have been demonstrated to facilitate production of large populations of transgenic plants from V. vinifera ‘Merlot’, ‘Shiraz’ and ‘Thompson Seedless’ as well as Vitis hybrid ‘Seyval Blanc’.
    Plant Cell Tissue and Organ Culture 05/2008; 93(3):311-321. · 3.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A co-transformation system was developed to produce grapevines free of selectable marker genes. This was achieved by transforming Vitis vinifera L. ‘Thompson Seedless’ somatic embryos with a mixture of two Agrobacterium strains. The first strain contained a binary plasmid with an egfp gene of interest between the T-DNA borders. The second strain harbored the neomycin phosphotransferase (nptII) gene for positive selection and the cytosine deaminase (codA) gene for negative selection, linked together by a bi-directional dual promoter complex. Our technique included a short positive selection phase on medium containing 100 mg l−1 kanamycin before subjecting cultures to prolonged negative selection on medium containing 250 mg l−1 5-fluorocytosine. We regenerated 25 stable EGFP expressing transgenic lines. PCR analysis confirmed 18 lines contained only the egfp gene, whereas the remaining contained both egfp and codA/nptII genes. Presumably, the 18 monogenic lines arose through cross protection by being in close proximity to cells that expressed nptII and thus detoxified kanamycin in the immediate vicinity. This is the first report for grapevine using a combination of positive and negative selection to produce transgenic plants that do not contain marker genes.
    Plant Science. 01/2008;
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    M Dutt, Z T Li, S A Dhekney, D J Gray
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    ABSTRACT: Shoot apical meristem explants of Vitis vinifera "Thompson Seedless" were used for Agrobacterium-mediated genetic transformation. It was determined that the meristems had to be subjected to a dark growth phase then wounded to obtain transgenic plants. Morphological and histological studies illustrated the role of wounding to expose apical meristem cells for transformation. A bifunctional egfp/nptII fusion gene was used to select kanamycin resistant plants that expressed green fluorescent protein (GFP). Kanamycin at a concentration of 16 mg L(-1) in selection medium resulted in recovery of non-chimeric transgenic plants that uniformly expressed GFP, whereas 8 mg L(-1) kanamycin allowed non-transgenic and/or chimeric plants to develop. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Southern blot analyses confirmed the presence of transgenes and their stable integration into the genome of regenerated plants. Up to 1% of shoot tips produced stable transgenic cultures within 6 weeks of treatment, resulting in a total of 18 independent lines.
    Plant Cell Reports 01/2008; 26(12):2101-10. · 2.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A translational fusion between the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) and neomycin phosphotransferase (NPTH) genes was used to optimize parameters influencing Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of Vitis vinifera L. cv. Thompson Seedless. The corresponding bifunctional protein produced from this EGFP/NPTH fusion gene allowed for a single promoter to drive expression of both green fluorescence and kanamycin resistance, thus conserving promoter resources and climinating potential promoter-promoter interactions. The fusion gene, driven by either a double cauliflower mosaic virus 35S (CaMV 35S) promoter or a double cassava vein mosaic virus (CsVMV) promoter, was immobilized into Agrobacterium strain EHA 105. Somatic embryos capable of direct secondary embryogenesis were used as target tissues to recover transgenic plants. Simultaneous visualization of GFP fluorescence and kanamycin selection of transgenic cells, tissues, somatic embryos, and plants were achieved. GFP expression and recovery of embryogenic culture lines were used as indicators to optimize transformation parameters. Preculturing of somatic embryos for 7 d on fresh medium prior to transformation minimized Agrobacterium-induced tissue browning/necrosis. Alternatively, browning/necrosis was reduced by adding 1 gl−1 of the antioxidant dithiothreitol (DTT) to post co-cultivation wash media. While combining preculture with antioxidant treatments did not result in a synergistic improvement in response, either treatment resulted in recovery of more stable embryogenic lines than did the control. A 48h co-cultivation period combined with 75 mgl−1 kanamycin in selection medium was optimal. DNA analysis confirmed stable integration of transgenes into the grape genome: 63% had single gene insertions, 27% had two inserts, and 7 and 3% had three and four inserts, respectively. Utilizing optimized procedures, over 1400 stable independent transgenic embryogenic culture lines were obtained, of which 795 developed into whole plants. Transgenic grapevines have exhibited normal vegetative morphology and stable transgene expression for over 5 yr.
    In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology - Plant 04/2006; 42(3):220-227. · 1.14 Impact Factor
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    Zhijian T Li, D J Gray
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    ABSTRACT: A seed-specific 2S albumin gene and its promoter region of grape (Vitis vinifera L.) were isolated using an improved thermal asymmetric interlaced PCR that allowed efficient amplification of target sequence of up to 3 kbp in length directly from genomic DNA. The 2S albumin VvAlb1 (for V. vinifera 2S albumin 1) gene from different grape cultivars encompasses a coding region of 504-540 nucleotides corresponding to a deduced amino acid sequence of 167-179 residues. This deduced protein contains up to 30% glutamine residues and eight cysteine residues arranged in a pattern highly conserved among 2S albumins for disulfide bond formation. DNA sequence alignment revealed that the same VvAlb1 gene among different grape cultivars varied greatly, including an insertion of up to 36 bp near the 3' end of the gene sequence isolated from 'Thompson Seedless'. DNA sequence analysis indicated that several conserved seed-specific regulatory motifs were clustered within a 0.6-kbp region 5' upstream of the transcription start site. To further test promoter activity, the sequence of this region was used to drive a bifunctional EGFP/NPTII fusion gene in Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of grape somatic embryos and leaf discs of grape and tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.). A high level of GFP expression, comparable with that derived from an enhanced double CsVMV promoter, was observed in the cotyledonary but not hypocotyl and vegetative tissues of grape and tobacco. These results suggest that the VvAlb1 gene promoter isolated is capable of conferring seed-specific gene expression.
    Genome 05/2005; 48(2):312-20. · 1.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Methods to manage uncontrolled flow of transgenes via pollen and seeds are increasing in importance as transgenic crops become more commonplace. In many parts of the world, grapevine scions are grafted onto rootstocks, which are adapted to resist adverse soil conditions and pests and/or to promote vigor. Water, minerals and other important nutrients are transferred in bulk from the rootstock to scion via the xylem. Thus, it is possible that bioactive peptides produced by a transgenic rootstock and deposited into its xylem sap would be similarly transferred to a non-transgenic scion. If the peptide conferred a desirable trait to the non-transgenic scion, such as disease resistance, the issue of unwanted gene flow would be solved, since transgenic pollen and seeds would not be produced during flowering and fruit production. Furthermore, the commercialization of transgenic grapevines would be simplified, since relatively few transgenic rootstock varieties would be needed to protect any non- transgenic scion. As an example, transgenic rootstock technology might be used in the control of Pierce's disease (PD), which is caused by the xylem-limited bacteria, Xylella fastidiosa. Antimicrobial peptides produced by a transgenic rootstock may control bacteria in the xylem sap of a non-transgenic scion, thus providing PD resistance. To test this hypothesis, transgenic Vitis vinifera 'Thompson Seedless' expressing the Shiva-1 lytic peptide gene was treated as a rootstock. Non-transgenic V. vinifera 'Cabernet Sauvignon' and 'Thompson Seedless' were grafted onto the rootstock. Controls consisted of grafted and non-grafted transgenic and non-transgenic vines. Presence of the Shiva-1 peptide in xylem sap of the scion was detected by Enzyme- Linked Immunoabsorbent Assay (ELISA).
    01/2005;
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    ABSTRACT: A method of clonal germplams preservation utilizing dehydrated somatic embryos and cool temperature storage conditions was demonstrated. Somatic embryos of grapevine (Vitis vinifera L) Autumn Seedless and Chardonnay were produced from suspension cultures. After washing twice with sterile water mature somatic embryos were blot-dried and placed on sterile filter paper in an open Petri dish in a laminar flow hood until they reached about 25% of their initial weight. Approximately 300 dried embryos were placed in each sterile 90×15 mm Petri dish, which was tightly sealed with two layers of ParafilmTM. Sealed dishes were stored in the dark at 4°C in a standard refrigerator. Samples of 25–60 individual dehydrated somatic embryos were periodically tested for viability by placing them on solidified MS medium for germination and plant regeneration. After 42 mo. of dehydrated storage, 90% of the somatic embryos regenerated into plants. To further test utility, of this storage method dehydrated embryos stored for 12 and 26 mo. were shipped from Florida to Washington where 75 and 87.5% regenerated into plants, respectively. Cool temperature storage of dehydrated somatic embryos is a simple and inexpensive method of clonal, germplasm preservation when compared to alternatives such as cryopreservation.
    In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology - Plant 01/2005; 41(6):752-756. · 1.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Novel bi-directional duplex promoters (BDDP) were constructed by placing two identical core promoters divergently on both upstream and downstream sides of their duplicated enhancer elements. Estimates of promoter function were obtained by creating versions of CaMV 35S and CsVMV BDDPs that contained reporter marker genes encoding beta-glucuronidase (GUS) and enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) interchangeably linked either to the upstream or downstream core promoters. GUS was used for quantitative analysis of promoter function, whereas, EGFP allowed visual qualitative evaluation. In addition, the GUS and EGFP genes placed in downstream positions were modified by translational fusion with neomycin phosphotransferase (NPTII) to allow simultaneous monitoring of promoter activity and selection of stable transformants. These versions of BDDP were compared with each other and with equivalent unidirectional constructs by evaluating their expression in grape and tobacco. For 35S promoter constructs tested in grape somatic embryos (SE), BDDP exhibited transient GUS expression 206- and 300-fold greater in downstream and upstream configurations, respectively, compared to a unidirectional 35S core promoter. Compared with a unidirectional double enhanced 35S promoter, BDDPs exhibited 0.5- and 3-fold increased GUS expression from downstream and upstream core promoters, respectively. The same differences in expression levels determined quantitatively with GUS were distinguished qualitatively with EGFP. Constructs using CsVMV core promoters yielded results relative to those obtained with 35S promoter. For example, the upstream BDDP CsVMV core promoter provided a 200-fold increase in GUS expression compared to a unidirectional core promoter. However, CsVMV promoter was found to have higher promoter activity than 35S promoter in both BDDP and unidirectional constructs. Incorporation of an additional duplicated enhancer element to BDDPs resulted in increased expression. For example, a 35S BDDP with two divergently arranged duplicated enhancer elements resulted in over a 6-fold increase in GUS expression in stably transformed tobacco plants compared to a BDDP with one duplicated enhancer element. Data demonstrate that BDDP composed of divergently-arranged core promoters separated by duplicated enhancers, all derived from a single promoter sequence, can be used to significantly enhance transgene expression and to direct synchronized expression of multiple transgenes.
    Transgenic Research 05/2004; 13(2):143-54. · 2.61 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ontogeny of somatic embryos of grapevine (Vitis vinifera) produced from solid- and liquid-culture-derived proembryogenic masses (PEM) was compared using light and scanning electron microscopy. Somatic embryos produced from solid-medium-derived PEM (SPEM) had large cotyledons, little or no visible suspensor structure, and a relatively undeveloped concave shoot apical meristem, whereas those from liquid-medium-derived PEM (LPEM) had smaller cotyledons, a distinct suspensor, and a flat-to-convex shoot apical meristem. The convex shoot apical meristem in LPEM-derived somatic embryos formed as early as the heart stage of development; it was 4-6 cell layers deep and rich in protein. Suspensors persisted in fully developed and mature LPEM-derived somatic embryos. The SPEM-derived somatic embryos exhibited dormancy, as do mature zygotic embryos, which also have a rudimentary suspensor, whereas LPEM-derived embryos were not dormant. We hypothesize that the presence of a persistent suspensor in LPEM-derived somatic embryos modulates development, ultimately resulting in rapid germination and a high plant-regeneration rate.
    American Journal of Botany 07/2003; 90(7):973-9. · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Anthracnose-resistant grapevine (Vitis vinifera L. cv. Chardonnay) plants were regenerated from embryogenic cultures that had been subjected to in vitro selection with culture filtrate of Elsinoe ampelina (de Bary) Shear. Three secreted proteins differentially expressed by in vitro-selected embryogenic cultures and regenerated plants were identified. An 8-kDa protein was identified as a lipid-transfer protein (LTP) by N-terminal amino acid sequence comparison. Two other differentially expressed proteins, with estimated molecular weights of 21.6 and 22 kDa, immuno-reacted with antiserum raised against a thaumatin-like protein (TLP) protein from pinto bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). N-terminal amino acid sequencing of the 21.6-kDa protein showed a high degree of homology to V. vinifera thaumatin-like protein 2 (VVTL-2 = grapevine osmotin; Acc no. CAA71883), and that of the 22-kDa protein was homologous to V. vinifera thaumatin-like protein 1 (VVTL-1; AAB61590). Interestingly, both VVTL-1 and VVTL-2 are pathogenesis-related (PR) proteins, belonging to the PR-5 group. Protein produced from the cloned grapevine VVTL-1 gene significantly inhibited E. ampelina spore germination and hyphal growth in vitro. Plants regenerated from in vitro-selected cultures similarly inhibited fungal growth in vivo. Enhanced expression of antifungal VVTL-1 in anthracnose resistant grapevine strongly suggests that it plays an important role, either alone or in conjunction with other PR proteins, by suppressing pathogen growth.
    Functional Plant Biology - FUNCT PLANT BIOL. 01/2003; 30(11).

Publication Stats

328 Citations
76.24 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1995–2012
    • University of Florida
      • • Mid-Florida Research and Education Center
      • • Tropical Research and Education Center
      Gainesville, FL, United States
    • Ave Maria University
      Leesburg, Virginia, United States
    • University of Malaga
      • Department of Botany and Plant Physiology
      Málaga, Andalusia, Spain
  • 2011
    • Fort Valley State University
      Georgia, United States