REGENERATION OF COWPEA [VIGNA UNGUICULATA (L.) WALP.] FROM SEEDLING SHOOT APEX CALLUS

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  • 1 Departments of Plant Pathology and Horticulture, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701

Cowpea, or southernpea, is an important food legume that provides a source of high-quality protein, especially in the mature seeds. In the United States, industries exist to supply dry and processed seeds. Our aim is to develop a regeneration system for cowpea as a prerequisite for genetic engineering. Our objective was to examine the in vitro responses of shoot tips to growth regulators. Shoot tips isolated from in vitro-germinated seedlings (`Coronet') were cultured on MS medium containing 2,4-D at 0, 0.01, 0.1, or 1 mg·liter–1 and kinetin at 2.5, 5, 10, or 20 mg·liter–1. Cultures were maintained at 12-hour photoperiods and 24C. Callus, shoots, and roots or combinations thereof developed depending on the treatment. Callus formed on 1 mg 2,4-D/liter, regardless of the kinetin level, but at 0.1 mg 2,4-D/liter and 5 or 10 mg kinetin/liter, shoots also grew. Callus, shoots, and roots developed on 2,4-D lower than 0.1 mg·liter–1. Callus induced on 5 mg kinetin/liter and 0.01 mg 2,4-D/liter regenerated shoots on transfer to 5 mg kinetin/liter and 0.1 mg NAA/liter. This work may assist in the development of a micropropagation system for cowpea.

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