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Weed control, management, ecology, and minutia
by Donald Kuonen
on November 29, 2019 at 9:23 AM
I am interested in using surflan or other mitosis inhibitors to induce polyploidy in Hippeastrum seeds during germination. I have used colchicine before, which inhibits spindle fiber formation. Can you suggest any other chemicals, but more specifically, what concentrations might induce polyploidy but not kill the seeds?  
Don Kuonen
Reply by Brad Hanson
on December 2, 2019 at 8:15 AM
Hi Don,  
I hadn't heard of using oryzalin (the active ingredient in Surflan)to induce polyploidy before but it sounded interesting. In a quick googlesearch, I ran across a number of sites that mentioned it's use among hobbiest plant breeders. One scientific paper ( colchicine (500 and 1000 μM) and oryzalin (11.5, 58 and 289 μM)so that might be a useful range to start with.  
Note, for those readers who may be a few years out from their last plant genetics class, polyploidy is the case where an organism has more than 2 paired sets of chromosomes. Most animal cells and many plants are diploid (1 paired set) but polyploidy is fairly common in plants. Polyploid plants can be autopolyploid (basically duplicate sets of the same genome - which is what would happen the the case above) or allopolyploid (has several different genomes from progenitor species - like hexaploid bread wheat). Plants are pretty interesting!
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