12th Class Biology Principals And Processes Of Biotechnology

  • question_answer 55)   Describe the role of Agrobactenumtumefaciens in transforming a plant cell.


                      A soil-inhabiting, plant pathogenic bacterium, Agro bacterium tumefaciens, infects broad-leaved crops including tomato, soyabean, sunflower and cotton, but not the cereals. It causes tumours called crown galls. Tumour formation is induced by its plasmid, which is, therefore called Ti-plasmid (Ti for tumour inducing). The Ti-plasmid integrates a segment of its DNA, termed T-DNA, into the chromosomal DNA of its host plant cells. The T-DNA causes tumours. As gene transfer occurs without human effort, the bacterium is known as natural genetic engineer of plants. Plant molecular biologists have started using Ti-plasmids as vectors to transfer foreign genes of interest into the target plant cells. They use a version of the plasmid from which tumour forming gene has been eliminated. The transformed bacteria do not cause disease, but still deliver genes of interest into a variety of plants.

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