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Growth of Tissues of Higher Plants in Continuous Liquid Culture and Their Use in a Nutritional Experiment

Report Number: AMRL TR 65-101
Author: Tulecke, Walter
Corporate Author: Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research, Inc.
Laboratory: Aerospace Medical Research Laboratories
Date of Publication: 1965-07
Pages: 46
Contract: AF 33(616)-1355
Project: None Given
AD Number: AD0620047

The purpose of this work was twofold: (1) to devise a continuous culture system for higher plant cells and (2) to produce a sufficient amount of plant tissue culture for a nutritional experiment with weanling mice. The overall purpose of this work is to provide information for the evaluation of plants as food sources in long term space missions and as possible future sources of supplementary protein. Rose tissue was the most suitable for growth in liquid culture and approximately 40 pounds (20 kg) fresh weight of sterile tissue was produced from seven cultures which were harvested periodically over a period of 222 days. The cultures were of 8 liters volume and this amount was maintained by replacing the medium which was harvested. The average yield was 112 g/1 fresh weight (4.6 g/1 dry weight)/day. Approximately 10 pounds (5.0 kg) of contaminated rose tissue was also produced. When incorporated into a test diet for weanling mice, the sterile rose tissue was a better food supplement than contaminated rose. A bacterial contaminant which grew well with the rose tissue and did not appreciably alter the growth rate was isolated and identified as Achromobacter liquefaciens. Since this was a reisolated type species for the genus, it was deposited in the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC No. 15716). Protein determinations on the rose tissue showed a high protein level for tissue grown in continuous culture as compared to tissue grown in flasks.

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