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Research article1993Peer reviewedOpen access

Hormonal Characterization of Transgenic Tobacco Plants Expressing the rolC Gene of Agrobacterium rhizogenes TL-DNA

Nilsson, Ove; Moritz, Thomas; Imbault, Nadine; Sandberg, Göran; Olsson, Olof


Transgenic tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L. cv Wisconsin 38) plants expressing the Agrobacterium rhizogenes rolC gene under the control of the cauliflower mosaic virus 35S RNA promoter were constructed. These plants displayed several morphological alterations reminiscent of changes in indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), cytokinin, and gibberellin (GA) content. However, investigations showed that neither the IAA pool size nor its rate of turnover were altered significantly in the rolC plants. The biggest difference between rolC and wild-type plants was in the concentrations of the cytokinin, isopentenyladenosine (iPA) and the gibberellin GA19. Radioimmunoassay and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry measurements revealed a drastic reduction in rolC plants of iPA as well as in several other cytokinins tested, suggesting a possible reduction in the synthesis rate of cytokinins. Furthermore, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry quantifications of GA19 showed a 5- to 6-fold increase in rolC plants compared with wild-type plants, indicating a reduced activity of the GA19 oxidase, a proposed regulatory step in the gibberellin biosynthesis. Thus, we conclude that RolC activity in transgenic plants leads to major alterations in the metabolism of cytokinins and gibberellins.

Published in

Plant Physiology
1993, Volume: 102, number: 2, pages: 363-371