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MICROPROPAGATION OF CACTUS (Opuntia ficus-indica) AS STRATEGIC TOOL TO COMBAT DESERTIFICATION IN ARID AND SEMI ARID REGIONS (Pages : 1 - 8)

M. M. KHALAFALLA, E. ABDELLATEF, M. M. MOHAMEED AHMED AND M. G. OSMAN

With aim of large production of plant material, a protocol for micropropagation of Opuntia ficus-indica was developed at the laboratory of plant tissue culture, Commission for Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering, Khartoum, Sudan, during the period of August 2006 to July 2007. Young cladode explant containing one areole was cultured on Murashige and Skoog medium (MS) supplemented with benzyladenine (BA) and kinetin (Kin) alone or in combination with naphthalene acetic acid (NAA). The highest shoot multiplication (26.5±1.74 shoots per explant) was achieved in 90 days on MS supplemented with BA (5.0 mg/l). Excised shoot cuttings of 3.0 cm were placed on the MS basal medium hormone-free or supplemented with different levels (0.25-1.0 mg/l) of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), indole-3-butyric acid (IBA) and NAA. Although, satisfactory rooting percentage (100%) was achieved on both MS free-hormone or supplemented with IAA at 0.5 mg/l but, the highest number (15.0 ± 1.1) of root per shoot was obtained on MS medium supplemented with 0.5 mg/l IAA. Plants were successfully established in soil and adapted to greenhouse conditions. The protocols developed in this work provide a basis to achieve massive propagation of O. ficus-indica by in vitro culture of areoles as strategic tool to combat desertification in arid and semi arid regions. Download


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