Ensete ventricosum (WELW.) CHEESMAN: A CHEAP AND ALTERNATIVE GELLING AGENT FOR PINEAPPLE (Ananas comosus VAR. SMOOTH CAYENNE) IN VITRO PROPAGATION

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October – November 2012, vol. 2, no. 2
pages: 640-652
Article type: Biotechnology of Biotechnology
Abstract: Different mechanisms are tried so far to reduce the production cost of plant tissue culture through increasing multiplication rate and/or substituting expensive components for wider usage of the technology. Subsequently, replacing the most common gelling agent, agar, took an attention since higher proportion of media cost comes from it. Up to now different alternatives were tried though they have drawbacks due to their inherent chemical characteristics. Therefore the search for new alternatives like Enset ventricosum is important. Enset flour, ‘Bulla’, has been tried in this study for the first time to substitute agar and showed no significant difference for shoots number, root number, shoot height, leaf number and an associated fresh weight of the plantlets besides good gelling ability than Agar. Subsequently, ‘Bulla’ at 80g L-1 gelled well and gave 11.8 shoots with 0.95g and 13.33 roots having 1.37 cm length. This rate can also save up to 76 % cost of gelling though significant difference was found for root length of 3.23 cm with Agar, 8 g L-1. This indicates further study on biochemical and/ or hormonal activity and across crop genotypes to use ‘Bulla’ as a cheap alternative commercial gelling agent.
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