BGN 10: The mutagenic effect of proflavin on barley BARLEY GENETICS NEWSLETTER, VOL. 10, II. RESEARCH NOTES
Arenaz et al., pp. 6-7

II. 2. The mutagenic effect of proflavin on barley.

P. Arenaz, A. Hodgdon, and R. A. Nilan, Department of Agronomy and Soils and Program in Genetics, Washington State University, Pullman, Washington 99164, U.S.A.

One of the major interests of our laboratory is the production of putative "waxy" mutants in barley with specific point mutations (e.g., frameshift, base substitution) for use in a proposed in situ mutagen monitoring system. So far we have induced a number of "waxy" mutants by sodium azide and EMS along with gamma rays. Our major need now is frameshift mutants.

A preliminary experiment with the frameshift mutagen proflavin was conducted in the Spring of 1979. The proflavin concentrations used were 2 x 10-3 M, 5 x 10-3 M and 7 x 10-3 M. Each treatment was in a four liter flask with 3.2 liter treatment volume. The flasks were placed in a 20°C water bath and treated for 24 hr with continuous air bubbling. The seeds were washed for 2 hr in running tap water, dried back overnight, and then stored in a 4°C cold chamber before planting. Each treatment of 4000 seeds was divided into four planting reps of 1000 seeds and were planted in a randomized plot design. When the plants were mature, M1 spikes were picked one from each plant, planted in a greenhouse in the fall and winter, and scored for chlorophyll mutations. Table 1 shows the result of the mutation scoring. As can be seen, none of the proflavin treatments induced a statistically significant increase in the mutation rate over the control level.

Table 1.

A second series of experiments using several acridines (frameshift mutagen) to obtain chlorophyll and waxy mutations were completed last fall and grown in Arizona. The mutagens used were: acridine orange, acriflavin, proflavin, and acridine. A11 treatments were done with 10% demethylsulfoxide (DMSO) to enhance uptake. Although these treatments have yet to be analyzed, a reduction in seed viability and in initial seedling growth was observed. Hopefully, these treatments will yield significant mutation rates.

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