Growth and Physiology of Suspension-Cultured Plant Cells: the Contribution of Tobacco BY-2 Cells to the Study of Auxin Action

  • Jean-Pierre Renaudin
Part of the Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry book series (AGRICULTURE, volume 53)


Cultured animal and plant cells display unique advantages such as the homogeneity of cell types within a population, the control of extracellular parameters and the continuous availability of biomass. In addition, the observation and manipulation of cultured cells is easier than that of cells within the organs. Cultured animal cells have been profitably used for the analysis of various differentiation processes. The differentiated status of plant cells is more reversible than that of animal cells, as it is in a major part the consequence of the numerous signals that they perceive in planta or in vitro. Plant cells cultured in vitro are often said to be undifferentiated. In fact, they do not resemble truly undifferentiated plant cells such as meristematic ones, as they share signs of dedifferentiation like proplastids and mitotic activity, with signs of differentiation like large vacuolar and Golgi apparatus and a relatively thick wall. In addition, in vitro cultured plant cells are much larger than meristematic cells. Cultured plant cells are widely used as convenient biomass providing systems that undergo basic mechanisms such as cell division. Their suitability for the approach to whole plant biology has been repeatedly questioned because of the peculiar differentiation status they adopt in vitro. However, their capacity to provide models of differentiation has already been demonstrated, e.g., in somatic embryogenesis, meristem neoformation, xylogenesis, photosynthesis, and secondary metabolites biosynthesis. Moreover, cultured plant cells do react to hormones and other signals as well as cells in planta. They provide ideal tools to study the cellular and molecular relationship of the effect of the signals associated with totipotency in plant cells.


Cell Expansion Culture Plant Cell Tobacco Cell Auxin Level Auxin Concentration 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jean-Pierre Renaudin
    • 1
  1. 1.UMR PBV (Physiologie et Biotechnologies Végétale)INRA-IBVMVillenave d’Ornon CedexFrance

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