Genetic Transfer in Plants Through Interspecific Protoplast Fusion

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Science  11 Feb 1983:
Vol. 219, Issue 4585, pp. 683-688
DOI: 10.1126/science.219.4585.683


Protoplasts of sexually incompatible species have been fused and in some combinations have given rise to somatic hybrid plants. Partial elimination of parental chromosomes from either species is common in such hybrids, but total chromosome loss has generally occurred only with phylogenetically unrelated pairings. Genetic function of one parent may be retained despite a complete loss of its chromosomes, suggesting that genetic introgression is possible in the absence of complete donor chromosomes. A model interspecific combination for such studies is the potato-tomato somatic hybrid for which numerous phenotypes and karyotypes are encountered at the outset, with a broader range observed in the second somatic generation.