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Analysis of membrane components of cells and tissues to determine the effect of preculture, desiccation and freezing and application

Cell membrane systems are the primary site of freezing injury in plant. Freeze tolerance mechanisms depend on the membrane stabilization: through changes in lipid composition, production of membrane protecting polypeptides etc. Sterols and phospholipids are the major components of plant membrane. In order to unravel possible mechanisms involved in cryo-protection on the membrane level, a detailed analysis of sterols, phospholipids and fatty acids bound to different lipid fractions as well as well as free fatty acids should be performed. Sucrose pretreatment and desiccation are both are essential to survive the cryopreservation for many plant species. Result 4 focused on the change in membrane components induced by sucrose pretreatment / desiccation. The knowledge was subsequently implemented to improve the existing cryopreservation protocols for diverse plant species ensuring wide application potential.

Key results:
- Sucrose pretreatment / desiccation resulted in change in sterols, phospholipids, bound and free fatty acids;
- Such changes are closely associated with cryopreservation ability;
- Application of specific sterols, fatty acids during the preculture process could improve post thaw regeneration after cryopreservation.

This achievement is not only helpful for improve the conservation of plant germplasm but also provides valuable information with respect to possible mechanisms of abiotic stress (especially drought and frost) resistance in plants.

Related information

Reported by

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Laboratory of Tropical Crop Improvement, Kasteelpark Arenberg 13
3001 Heverlee
Belgium
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