Aristolochia fimbriata is a small herbaceous perennial in the basal angiosperm family Aristolochiaceae. The family contains diverse floral forms ranging from radial to monosymmetric flowers with a wide variety of insect pollinators. Additionally, Aristolochia species contain secondary metabolites that are important natural toxins and traditional medicines, and are critical to the reproduction of swallowtail butterflies. These characteristics, in combination with the small genome size and short life cycle of A. fimbriata, have prompted further development of this species as a model system to study the evolution of basal angiosperms. As a prerequisite for developing a genetic transformation procedure for Aristolochia, we developed protocols for in vitro plant multiplication, shoot organogenesis, rooting, and acclimation of tissue culture-derived plants. Two varieties of Aristolochia were multiplied in vitro and rooted with 100% efficiency. Shoot regeneration was achieved within 1 month of culture initiation from whole leaf, internodal stem, and petiole explants. The highest regeneration success (97%) was recorded for stem explants. Regenerated and rooted shoots were acclimated to greenhouse conditions and developed flowers within 4 weeks of transplanting.
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