High frequency callus formation from maize protoplasts

S. R. Ludwig, D. A. Somers, W. L. Petersen, R. F. Pohlman, M. A. Zarowitz, B. G. Gengenbach, J. Messing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


A solid feeder layer technique was developed to improve callus formation of Black Mexican Sweet maize (Zea mays L.) suspension culture protoplasts. Protoplasts were plated in 0.2 ml liquid media onto a cellulose nitrate filter on top of agarose-solidified media in which Black Mexican Sweet suspension feeder cells were embedded. Callus colony formation frequencies exceeding 10% of the plated protoplasts were obtained for densities of 103-105 protoplasts/ 0.2 ml, which was 100- to 1,000-fold higher than colony formation frequencies obtained for conventional protoplast plating methods such as liquid culture or embedding in agarose media. Compared with conventional methods, the feeder layer method gave higher colony formation frequencies for three independently maintained Black Mexican Sweet suspension lines. Differences among the three lines indicated that colony formation frequencies might also be influenced by the suspension culture maintenance regime and length of time on different 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid concentrations. The callus colony formation frequency reported is an essential prerequesite for recovering rare mutants or genetically transformed maize protoplasts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)344-350
Number of pages7
JournalTheoretical and Applied Genetics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics


  • Callus formation frequency
  • Corn
  • Feeder layer technique
  • Protoplasts
  • Zea mays L.


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