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Hamidou F. Sakhanokho and M. Nurul Islam-Faridi

We report for the first time the incidence of spontaneous autotetraploidy in Solanum aethiopicum (PI 636107). Stomatal dimensions and frequency, number of chloroplasts per guard cell, flow cytometry, and chromosome counts were used to differentiate the diploid plants from tetraploids. The impact of increased ploidy on pollen viability as assessed by in vitro germination and on selected morphological traits was evaluated. In vitro pollen germination was reduced in tetraploid plants, but no significant differences were found in fruit production per plant between diploid and tetraploid plants. Compared with the diploids, the tetraploid plants were significantly shorter and had wider leaves and smaller fruits; therefore, tetraploid S. aethiopicum plants can be valuable for future breeding programs, particularly those aiming to develop shorter, more compact plants. Moreover, some S. aethiopicum selections are grown for their edible leaves, so tetraploid plants producing large leaves would be desirable. Additionally, the availability of tetraploid S. aethiopicum could remove hybridization barriers caused by ploidy differences with other tetraploid Solanum species.

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Yan Ma, M. Nurul Islam-Faridi, Charles F. Crane, David M. Stelly, H. James Price, and David H. Byrne

To our knowledge, there has been no published technique to produce consistently high-quality slides of somatic chromosomes of roses (Rosa sp.). Therefore, various pretreatments, fixatives, digestions, stains, and maceration and squashing methods were tested to identify a procedure to produce clear, well-spread chromosomes from shoot tips. The best results were obtained after pretreatment in a mixture of 0.1% colchicine and 0.001 m 8-hydroxyquinoline for 4 h, and fixation in 2 acetone: 1 acetic acid (v/v) with 2% (w/v) polyvinylpyrrolidone. The darkest-stained chromosomes were obtained with carbol-fuchsin staining of air-dried cell suspensions that had been spread in 3 ethanol: 1 acetic acid (v/v).