Genetic transformation allows the introduction of foreign genes from unrelated species and the down-regulation or up-regulation of endogenous genes. The technology is very effective in generating novel genetic variations and is expected to accelerate or complement conventional breeding efforts. Methods for generating transgenic tall fescue [Lolium arundinaceum (Schreb.) Darbysh.] plants have been developed based on biolistic transformation and Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. Potentially useful agronomic genes have been tested in tall fescue to improve forage quality and abiotic stress tolerance. In this chapter, we review progress in biotechnological improvement of tall fescue and discuss future molecular breeding of this species.

Keywords: tall fescue, biolistic transformation, Agrobacterium transformation, molecular breeding, transgene, transgenic plant.

Abbreviations: 4CL, 4-coumarate:CoA ligase; bar, phosphinothricin acetyltransferase; C3H, p-coumarate 3-hydroxylase; CAD, cinnamyl alcohol dehydrogenase; CaMV, cauliflower mosaic virus; CCR, cinnamyl CoA reductase; COMT, caffeic acid O-methyltransferase; CCOMT, caffeoyl CoA 3-O-methyltransferase; DNA, deoxyribonucleic acid; G, guaiacyl units derived from coniferyl alcohol; H, p-hydroxyphenyl units derived from p-coumaryl alcohol; HCT, hydroxycinnamoyl-coenzyme A shikimate/quinate hydroxycinnamoyltransferase; hph, hygromycin phosphotransferase gene; PCR, polymerase chain reaction; PPT, phosphinothricin; S, syringyl units derived from sinapyl alcohol; T1, T2, progenies of transgenic plants.


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Tall Fescue Monograph

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Chapter 2: Conclusions