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A network of HEAT SHOCK FACTORS and co-regulators determining temperature sensitivity of plant tissue culture regeneration

Plant tissue culture and regeneration is implemented in many agricultural processes. It is used for the propagation of elite genotypes, to create transgenic crops, to preserve species and varieties, and to rescue or select unique genotypes for breeding. Protocols for tissue culture and regeneration for numerous species have been developed over many decades. Most often, media composition and hormone concentrations are varied to obtain successful protocols. However, environmental factors such as temperature are also important. Surprisingly few studies have investigated temperature to improve regeneration, despite it is well known, for instance, that heat stress can induce microspore embryogenesis. In this project, we address temperature to improve shoot organogenesis. Preliminary observations have shown that a shift in temperature changed the regeneration competence and bioinformatic studies pointed to the involvement of several transcription factors of the HEAT SHOCK FACTORS family. Expression studies and mutant analyses will identify HSFs involved in shoot regeneration and the identification of HSF co-regulators will reveal the transcription regulatory network conveying the impact of high temperature on regeneration. The results of this project will provide a better insight in how temperature can be implemented to optimise regeneration.