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Digitalis davisiana, commonly called Alanya foxglove, from Turkey, is an important medicinal herb as the main source of cardiac glycosides, cardenolides, anthraquinones, etc. It is also known in the Indian Medicine for treatment of wounds and burns. It has ornamental value as well. Overexploitation of D. davisiana has led this species to be declared protected, and thereby encouraged various methods for its propagation. In this study, an optimized and efficient plant tissue culture protocol was established using cotyledonary leaf, hypocotyl and root explants of D. davisiana. Callus tissues were obtained from the cotyledonary leaf, hypocotyl and root segments cultured on Murashige and Skoog's (MS) medium containing different plant growth regulators. The maximum number of somatic embryos were achieved by the MS medium containing 6-benzyladenine (1.0 mg/L BAP) or 2,4-dichlorophenoxy acetic acids (0.1 mg/L 2,4-D), which produced an average of 8.3 ± 1.5 or 5.3 ± 1.5 embryos per cotyledonary leaf, respectively. After 3 wk of culture in MS medium supplemented with 1.0 mg/L 2,4-D, callus showed a clear accumulation of orange pigmentation. Shoot regeneration was remarkably higher (14.3 indirect shoots) in a combination of α-naphthalene acetic acid (0.25 mg/L NAA) plus 3.0 mg/L BAP than 2.0 mg/L zeatin (10.3 ± 0.5 direct shoots) alone. The shoots were successfully rooted on MS medium supplemented with NAA (0.1-1.0 mg/L). In addition, synthetic seeds were produced by encapsulating shoot tips in 4% sodium alginate solution. Maximum conversion frequency of 76.6% was noted from encapsulated shoot tips cultured on 0.25 mg/L NAA with 1.0 mg/L BAP. The encapsulated shoot tips could be stored up to 60 days at 4 °C. Regenerated plantlets of D. davisiana were successfully acclimatized and transferred to soil. This study has demonstrated successful preservation of elite genotypes of D. davisiana.


Sandeep Kumar Verma, Gunce Sahin, Ekrem Gurel. Somatic embryogenesis, pigment accumulation, and synthetic seed production in Digitalis davisiana Heywood. Indian journal of experimental biology. 2016 Apr;54(4):245-53

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PMID: 27295921

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