Microbial Contamination in Plant Tissue Culture and Elimination Strategies
The ability to establish and grow plant cell, organ, and tissue cultures has been widely exploited for basic and applied research, and for the commercial production of plants (micro-propagation). Regardless of whether the application is for research or commerce, it is essential that the cultures be established in vitro free of biological contamination and be maintained as aseptic cultures during manipulation, growth, and storage. Micro-organisms become problematic by virtue of their prolific growth under high nutrient in vitro conditions, hence the need to eliminate them from explants before entering the in vitro cycle. Exclusion of these organisms from potential plant tissue culture materials can be approached in several ways, and have been widely researched across different genera of crops. This review highlights the diverse sources of microbial contamination in plant tissue culture technology and the available elimination strategies.
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