Utilization of Aseptic Seedling Explants for In vitro Propagation of Indian Red Wood
Micropropagation has been advocated as one of the most viable biotechnological tool for ex situ conservation of rare, endangered endemic medicinal plants germplasm. Rapid clonal micropropagation protocol for large-scale multiplication of an endemic medicinal plant Soymida febrifuga (Meliaceae) was established from 15-day aseptic seedling cotyledonary node and shoot tip explants. High frequency of sprouting and shoot differentiation was observed from cotyledonary node explants compared to shoot tip, on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium fortified with BA, KN, 2-iP and CM. Of the cytokinins used, BA (3.0 mgl-1) supported highest average number and maximum multiple shoot differentiation (16.6). In vitro proliferated shoots were multiplied rapidly by culturing nodal segments as microcuttings, further subcultured on the same media for elongation. Elongated shoots upon transfer to MS medium fortified with IBA showed rooting within two weeks of culture. Rooted plantlets were successfully hardened and 75% of rooted shoots successfully survived on establishment to the soil. Plants looked healthy with no visually detectable phenotypic variations. This protocol provides a successful and rapid technique that can be used for ex situ conservation minimizing the pressure on wild populations and contributes to the conservation of this endemic medicinally potent flora.
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