Stomatal guard cells retain full totipotent capacity


Stomatal guard cells are totipotent.

by Hall R. D., Riksen-Bruinsma T., Weyens G., Lefèbvre M., Dunwell J. M., Krens F. A. (1996)

Department of Cell Biology, DLO-Center for Plant Breeding and Reproduction Research, P.O. Box 16, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands (R.D.H., T.R.-B., F.A.K.); SES-Europe NV/SA, lndustriepark 15, B-3300 Tienen, Belgium (G.W., M.L.); and Zeneca Seeds, Jealott’s Hill Research Station, Bracknell, Berkshire RG12 6EY, United Kingdom (J.M.D.)

in Plant Physiology 112, 889–92. – doi: –


It has been successfully demonstrated, using epidermis explants of sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L.), that stomatal guard cells retain full totipotent capacity. Despite having one of the highest degrees of morphological adaptation and a unique physiological specialization, it is possible to induce a re-expression of full (embryogenic) genetic potential in these cells in situ by reversing their highly differentiated nature to produce regenerated plants via a callus stage.

The importance of these findings both to stomatal research and to our understanding of cytodifferentiation in plants is discussed.


Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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