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Hiroaki Ito, Masaki Ochiai, Hiroaki Kato, Katsuhiro Shiratake, Daigo Takemoto, Shungo Otagaki and Shogo Matsumoto

We have succeeded in establishing a virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) of rose using Apple latent spherical virus (ALSV) vectors. An ALSV infection on rose did not cause any symptoms like those observed on other plant species and grew healthy. We have cloned and sequenced the phytoene desaturase (PDS) gene in wild rose, then used its fragment for silencing the rose internal PDS gene. The silencing phenotypes such as the highly uniform photo-bleached phenotype with PDS inhibitions were observed on the upper leaves of primary shoots and on a secondary shoot of R. rugosa for more than 5 months. ALSV vectors seemed useful for analyzing gene function and for the molecular breeding of rose.

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Hiroaki Ito, Takahiro Hayashi, Masaki Hashimoto, Katsuro Miyagawa, Saori Nakamura, Youichi Mizuta and Susumu Yazawa

A protocol for the preparation of preserved flowers retaining natural color and texture of ‘Moondust Velvet Blue’ carnations (Dianthus caryophyllus) was developed. This three-step process consists of soaking flowers in ethyl alcohol, then soaking them in polypropylene glycol, followed by a rinse with ethyl alcohol. Some kinds of flowers processed in this manner retained their natural color and texture for at least 6 months. The physicochemical properties of appropriate solvents used for retaining natural pigmentation and texture are discussed. This protocol is applicable to 13 kinds of flowers among 30 kinds of flowers tested and adds a new dimension to postharvest techniques for cut flowers.