UKPCS Science Life Sciences-Biotechnology: Tissue Culture & Molecular Markers: #123

Tissue Culture

Tissue culture refers to a method in which fragments of a tissue (plant or animal tissue) are introduced into a new, artificial environment, where they continue to function or grow. While fragments of a tissue are often used, it is important to note that entire organs are also used for tissue culture purposes.

While the term tissue culture may be used for both plant and animal tissues, plant tissue culture is the more specific term used for the culture of plant tissues.Tissue Culture

Types of Tissue Culture

  • Seed Culture

Seed culture is the type  that is primarily used for plants such as orchids.

  • Embryo Culture

Embryo culture is the type of tissue culture that involves the isolation of an embryo from a given organism for in vitro growth.

*Note, the term embryo culture is used to refer to sexually produced zygotic embryo culture.

  • Callus Culture

*Callus – This is the term used to refer to unspecialized, unorganized and a dividing mass of cells. A callus is produced when explants (cells) are cultured in an appropriate medium –

  • Organ Culture

Organ culture is a type of tissue culture that involves isolating an organ for in vitro growth.

  • Protoplast Culture


*Protoplast -cells without cell walls. A protoplast is the term used to refer to cell (fungi, bacteria, plant cells etc) in which the cell wall has been removed, which is why they are also referred to as naked cells.

Protoplasts may be cultured in the following ways;

  • Hanging-drop cultures
  • Micro culture chambers
  • Soft agars matrix


Molecular markers

  1. A DNA sequence that is readily detected and whose inheritance can be easily monitored.
  2. The uses of molecular markers are based on naturally occurring polymorphism.
  3. A marker is gene of known function and location that aloe the studying the inheritance of the gene.
  4. A marker must be a polymorphic e it must exist in different forms so that chromosomes carrying mutant gene   can be distinguished from the chromosomes with the normal gene by a marker.
  5. Polymorphism involves existence of different foams of same gene in plants and population of plants.

Molecular markers are of two types:

  1. Based on nucleic acid (DNA) hybridization (non-PCR base approaches).

2. Based on PCR amplification (PCR-based approaches).

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