Editorial Article: Plant DNA analysis: preventing the brown, maintaining the green

09 Aug 2019

Two new ready-to-use reagent kits offer oxidative protection when working with sensitive plant tissue such as maize, sugar beet, rice and bananas. Rather than accepting the oxidative effect or manually preparing reagents and adding antioxidants, lab staff can save time and improve their results when analysing  ploidy content or genome size.

Sysmex has launched two new reagent kits – CyStain™ UV OxProtect and CyStain™ PI OxProtect – to determine ploidy content and genome size in plants that are sensitive to oxidative processes. Both reagent kits are based on the extraction and fluorescent staining of the cell nuclei from tissue and extend the present range of popular CyStain™ ploidy reagents. Sysmex Partec is a leading manufacturer of complete solutions in industrial applications and the only one producing reagents for the analysis of plant DNA, with many years of expertise in this field. CyStain™ UV OxProtect contains the fluorescent dye DAPI, suitable for devices with a UV light source. CyStain™ PI OxProtect, on the other hand, contains the dye propidium iodide for measuring with green or blue lasers.

The undesirable effect
CyStain™ UV / PI OxProtect are designed for the analysis of DNA in plant species where DNA staining with regular reagents can be difficult because of the presence of oxidative substances. While oxidation in its classic literal sense is the chemical reaction of a substance with oxygen, the endogenous oxidants of certain plants can induce a browning reaction of the tissue sample. These effects occur in about 25% of all cases and affect key agricultural plants such as maize, sugar beet, rice and bananas, and also many ornamental plants.

The answer to this
CyStain™ UV / PI OxProtect contain additives preventing oxidation and the decomposition process triggered by the plant’s own oxidants in the tissue. This reduces – and in ideal cases actually prevents ¬– the browning reaction. If you work in a company or research institute in plant breeding and ecology, using CyStain™ UV / PI OxProtect will make your life easier since you no longer have to prepare reagents, add additives to the reagents that have been on the market for many years, or accept the oxidative effect.

A complete solution
Specifically for the above-mentioned applications, Sysmex offers the dedicated CyFlow® Ploidy Analyser or, alternatively, the CyFlow® Space flow cytometer equipped with a UV LED / UV laser (DAPI) or a 532 nm/488 nm laser (PI).

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