Transgene integration, expression level and stability have been studied, across two generations, in a population of rice plants transformed using a new dual binary vector system: pGreen/pSoup. pGreen is a small Ti binary vector unable to replicate in Agrobacterium without the presence of another binary plasmid, pSoup, in the same strain. We engineered both pGreen and pSoup to contain each a different T-DNA. Transformation experiments were conducted using a pGreen vector containing the bar and gusA expression units (no transgene in pSoup) or with a pSoup vector containing an aphIV and gfp expression units (no transgene in pGreen). High plant transformation frequencies (up to 40%) were obtained using herbicide resistance ( bar) or antibiotic resistance ( aphIV) genes. Around 80% of the independently transformed plants expressed unselected reporter genes ( gusA or gfp) present in the vectors. Backbone sequences transfer was frequent (45% of lines) and occurred often in multicopy lines. Around 15–20% of the rice plant lines contained a single T-DNA integration without backbone. Integration of additional transgene copies did not improve expression levels in either T 0 plants or T 1 progenies. Nearly all multicopy lines contained transgenes integrated at several loci in the plant genome, showing that T-DNAs from either pGreen or pSoup frequently integrated at unlinked loci. Precise determination of loci number required the analysis of transgene presence in progeny. Segregation of transgene phenotype was generally misleading and tended to underestimate the real number of transgenic loci. The contribution of this new dual-binary vector system to the development of high-throughput rice transformation systems and to the production of marker-free transgenic rice plants is discussed.
Vain, P.; Afolabi, A.S.; Worland, B.; Snape, J.W. Transgene behaviour in populations of rice plants transformed using a new dual binary vector system: pGreen/pSoup. TAG Theoretical and Applied Genetics (2003) 107 (2) 210-217. [DOI: 10.1007/s00122-003-1255-7]