Expression of transferred genes during hairy root development in pea

S. Monique Nicoll, Lindy A. Brigham, Fushi Wen, Martha C. Hawes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Root border cell development and expression of reporter genes were evaluated in transgenic pea hairy roots. Successful induction of hairy roots in pea is conditioned by bacterial strain and plant genotype, as well as by developmental and environmental factors. Morphological changes sometimes occur when hairy roots are transferred from infected plants to tissue culture media, but such changes are confined to specific clones. Expression of reporter genes under the control of promoters from bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) "stress" genes encoding phenylalanine ammonia lyase and chalcone synthase were evaluated. Expression patterns vary between hairy roots taken directly from infected plants, and those grown in culture; most hairy roots taken from infected plants exhibit expression throughout all tissues, whereas expression in cultured hairy roots is most often localized to specific tissues. Patterns of expression that occur during different stages of hairy root development are very similar to those observed in transgenic plants expressing the same fusion genes. Border cell separation and release in hairy roots is normal, and expression of glucuronidase in border cells of some transgenic roots resulted in development of bright blue single cells. Cultured hairy roots should provide a very useful model for studying the effect of defined changes in root border cells on microbial associations with roots of this important legume.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-66
Number of pages10
JournalPlant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1995


  • Agrobacterium rhizogenes
  • Pisum sativum
  • border cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Horticulture


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