Volume 16 Part 1 Article 15: Fruiting Body Gene Transfer Method for Agaricus bisporus Potentiates Crop Improvement and ‘Pharmining’

Volume 16 Part 1 Article 15
Year 2004
Title: Fruiting Body Gene Transfer Method for Agaricus bisporus Potentiates Crop Improvement and ‘Pharmining’
Authors: C.P. Romaine, X. Chen and C. Schlagnhaufer

Abstract:

We previously described an easy and effective method to genetically transform Agaricus bisporus. This method utilizes the innate ability of a common soil bacterium, Agrobacterium tumefaciens, to transfer DNA to plants. In vitro, the bacterium can be “tricked” into sensing A. bisporus as a host plant, thereby affecting gene transfer. However, unlike conventional Agrobacterium-based protocols involving transfer of DNA to fungal spores or vegetative mycelium, our method relies on the use of the fruiting body as the recipient tissue. This procedural modification had a major impact on the success of transformation. The advent of a facile gene transfer method for A. bisporus creates new vistas for crop improvement and provides a powerful tool for the molecular analysis of biological processes in this species. Early transgenic breeding achievements will likely shadow those for crop plants, such as increased resistance to pathogens and pests. Of potentially greater significance is its application in pharmaceutical mining (“Pharmining”), in which A. bisporus is used as a factory for the mass production of valuable therapeutic proteins (i.e., vaccines, enzymes, monoclonal antibodies, etc.).

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