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Thursday, March 1, 2007

Agrobacterium Mediated Gene Transfer: Applications

Agrobacterium are gram –ve bacteria of family Rhibiaceae.they are often found in rhizosphere region of plants and are pathogenic. Their phytogenetic activity is listed below

Agrobacterium tumifaciance: Induces Crown gall disease
Agrobacterium rhizogens: Induce hairy root disease

The pathogenic activity agrobacterium species are acquired due to the presence of certain very large plasmids known as Ti (Tumour inducing) and R i(Root inducing)  plasmids.


Ti Plasmid - Image Source


A.tumifaciance is characterized by uncontrolled proliferation of cells causing tumours.These plasmids have specific regions for producing phytohormones and special amino acid [Opines] synthesizing region, which form the carbon source.

The plasmids gets incorporated into the plant genome during infection and which inturn  results in causing disease in plant.

It is the first identified successful gene transformation applicable for plants. It is considered as “nature’s most efficient plant genetic engineer”.

Application of Agrobacterium in Genetic Engineering

These plasmids are very useful in transferring gene into the plant genome, so desired gene can be cloned into these plasmids and transferred. virulence region can be removed and can be successfully used in gene transfer.