- It is the protein derived from single-celled organisms.
- It is an alternate source of proteins for animal and human nutrition. E.g. Spirulina (a blue green alga), Methylophilus methylotrophus (a bacterium).
- Spirulina is rich in protein, minerals, fats, carbohydrate & vitamins. It is grown on materials like waste water from potato processing plants, straw, molasses, animal manure & sewage. This also reduces environmental pollution.
- A 250 Kg cow produces only 200 g protein/day. But 250 g Methylophilus methylotrophus produces 25 tonnes protein. It is due to high rate of biomass production and growth.
- A technique of growing plant cells/tissues/organs in sterile culture medium under controlled aseptic conditions.
- The ability to generate a whole plant from any cell/explant is called totipotency. An explant is any part of a plant that is grown in a test tube under sterile nutrient media.
- The nutrient medium must provide a carbon source (such as sucrose), inorganic salts, vitamins, amino acids and growth regulators like auxins, cytokinins etc.
- The method of producing thousands of plants in very short time through tissue culture is called micropropagation.
- These plants will be genetically identical to original plant, i.e., they are somaclones.
- Tomato, banana, apple etc. are produced by this method.
- Tissue culture is also used to recover healthy plants from diseased plants. The meristem (it will be virus-free) from infected plant is removed and grown in vitro to obtain virus-free plants. Scientists have cultured meristems of banana, sugarcane, potato, etc.
- Somatic hybridization: It is the fusion of protoplasts from two different varieties of plants (with desirable characters) to get hybrid protoplasts. It can be grown to form a new plant called somatic hybrids. Protoplasts can be isolated after digesting the cell walls of plant cells.
E.g. Protoplast of tomato + protoplast of potato → pomato.
This hybrid plant has the characteristics of tomato & potato. But it has no all desired characteristics for its commercial utilization.
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