Molecular markers, clonal fidelity and antioxidant properties of micropropagated horticultural crops

S.C. Debnath
In vitro propagation is practised all over the world and has now become a multibillion dollar industry for mass propagation of various plant species. The commercial use of micropagation represents one of the major success stories of utilizing tissue culture technology profitably. Fruits and vegetables contain relatively high levels of vitamin C, cellulose and pectin, and produce anthocyanins, which have important therapeutic values, including antitumor, antiulcer, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. Tremendous progress in plant tissue culture, resulting in great advances in micropropagation, has also occurred in various horticultural crops including berry crops. Although automation of micropropagation in bioreactors has been advanced as a possible way of reducing propagation cost, optimal plant production depends upon better understanding of physiological and biochemical responses of plant to the signals of culture microenvironment and an optimization of specific physical and chemical culture conditions to control the morphogenesis of plant species in liquid culture systems. With the advent of plant tissue culture techniques, it is extensively employed to multiply true-to-type plants rapidly which provides year around production. Somaclonal variation which can be genetic or epigenetic, affects the use of tissue culture propagation negatively, in general. Plant cells when cultured in artificial environment make numerous genetic alterations and aberrations. The introduction of molecular biology techniques, such as DNA-based markers, allows direct comparison of different genetic material independent of environmental influences. This review describes the progress in depth of morphological and chemical characterization of micropropagated horticultural crops. It also describes the use of molecular markers to address fundamental and practical questions of in vitro culture, and the employment of molecular markers for the assessment of genetic fidelity, uniformity, stability and true-to-typeness among donor and micropropagated horticultural plants.
Debnath, S.C. 2017. Molecular markers, clonal fidelity and antioxidant properties of micropropagated horticultural crops. Acta Hort. (ISHS) 1155:261-268
antioxidants, berry crops, bioreactor, DNA markers, epigenetic variation, micropropagation

Acta Horticulturae