Anthers and ovaries of six grapevine cultivars (three Vitis vinifera L., two V.×Labruscana L.H. Bailey, and one complex hybrid) were extracted from flower buds over 2 yr and cultured on three media reported to promote somatic embryogenesis in Vitis tissues. The highest percent embryogenesis from the hybrid ‘Chancellor’ and V. vinifera ‘Chardonnay,’ ‘Merlot,’ and ‘Pinot Noir’ occurred on medium C \[Nitsch and Nitsch, 1969, basal medium with 3.0% (w/v) sucrose, 0.01% (w/v) inositol, 0.3% (w/v) Phytagel, 2.5 μM 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid, 2.5 μM β-naphthoxyacetic acid, 5.0 μM N-(2-chloro-4-pyridyl)-N′-phenylurea, and 0.05% (w/v) glutamine\]. Regardless of the media, the labrusca cultivars ‘Concord’ and ‘Niagara’ produced soft non-embryogenic callus that was sometimes mixed with well-developed somatic embryos. Nine vinifera genotypes were further tested for several different years on medium C. Embryogenic cultures suitable for transformation were obtained from all genotypes in more than 1 yr. The average percent embryogenesis from ovaries was 7-fold higher than from anthers. There was significant annual variation in percent embryogenesis, demonstrating the need for media comparisons to be replicated for more than one season. Suspension cultures suitable for use in genetic transformation were initiated from ‘Chardonnay,’ ‘Merlot,’ and ‘Pinot Noir’ pro-embryogenic masses. ‘Chardonnay’ suspension cultures plated and grown under conditions developed for recovery of plants after biolistic transformation yielded approximately 500 non-transformed embryos per plate after 4 mo. of culture, with 68.6% of the embryos converting to plants. This is the first reported protocol for embryogenesis from ‘Concord,’ ‘Cabernet Franc,’ and ‘Pinot Noir’ grapevines.
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