Further studies on maize anther culture in vitro

Pollen-Plants: In the spring of 1981, more than 100 pollen plants of maize were obtained. Among them, 36 survived transplantation and grew vigorously in the summer field plot. As soon as chromosome numbers of the root-tip cells were checked, it was found that 21 of the plants were diploid (2n = 20), and the rest haploid (n = 10). Three of the diploid plants were self-fertilized and had approximately 100 percent seedset. The progenies of these plants were vigorous and uniform.

Anthers of some of the above H1 progenies were also cultured in vitro on zheng-14 medium. As expected, their response was highly favorable.

In the last summer, 304 maize pollen-plants were obtained. After transplantation to the greenhouse, 45 of them survived. They grew vigorously; 43 of them bore only pistillate inflorescence, while two of them bore both pistillate and staminate inflorescences. When the pollen fertility was examined it was observed to be totally sterile. It appeared that all of these 45 plants were haploid. Spontaneous doubling of chromosome numbers did not occur in them.

Evidence of Genetic Control: Anthers of maize Dan-San 91 had responded favorably to in vitro culturing in the past. In order to investigate the inheritance of this property, progenies from the self-fertilized as well as the cross-fertilized plants were grown in the summer of 1982. Anthers of these progenies were again cultured on the same medium. It was observed that 10.3 percent of them from both selfed and crossed progenies differentiated into either calli or embryoids. This again suggests that genotype plays an important role in maize anther culture response.

Margaret Yu and Y. C. Ting

Please Note: Notes submitted to the Maize Genetics Cooperation Newsletter may be cited only with consent of the authors.

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