Ticarcillin degradation product thiophene acetic acid is a novel auxin analog that promotes organogenesis in tomato

Suja George, Mohammed Rafi, Maitha Aldarmaki, Mohamed ElSiddig, Mariam Al Nuaimi, Naganeeswaran Sudalaimuthuasari, Vishnu Sukumari Nath, Ajay Kumar Mishra, Khaled Michel Hazzouri, Iltaf Shah, Khaled M.A. Amiri

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Efficient regeneration of transgenic plants from explants after transformation is one of the crucial steps in developing genetically modified plants with desirable traits. Identification of novel plant growth regulators and developmental regulators will assist to enhance organogenesis in culture. In this study, we observed enhanced shoot regeneration from tomato cotyledon explants in culture media containing timentin, an antibiotic frequently used to prevent Agrobacterium overgrowth after transformation. Comparative transcriptome analysis of explants grown in the presence and absence of timentin revealed several genes previously reported to play important roles in plant growth and development, including Auxin Response Factors (ARFs), GRF Interacting Factors (GIFs), Flowering Locus T (SP5G), Small auxin up-regulated RNAs (SAUR) etc. Some of the differentially expressed genes were validated by quantitative real-time PCR. We showed that ticarcillin, the main component of timentin, degrades into thiophene acetic acid (TAA) over time. TAA was detected in plant tissue grown in media containing timentin. Our results showed that TAA is indeed a plant growth regulator that promotes root organogenesis from tomato cotyledons in a manner similar to the well-known auxins, indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) and indole-3-butyric acid (IBA). In combination with the cytokinin 6-benzylaminopurine (BAP), TAA was shown to promote shoot organogenesis from tomato cotyledon in a concentration-dependent manner. To the best of our knowledge, the present study reports for the first time demonstrating the function of TAA as a growth regulator in a plant species. Our work will pave the way for future studies involving different combinations of TAA with other plant hormones which may play an important role in in vitro organogenesis of recalcitrant species. Moreover, the differentially expressed genes and long noncoding RNAs identified in our transcriptome studies may serve as contender genes for studying molecular mechanisms of shoot organogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1182074
JournalFrontiers in Plant Science
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • auxin
  • lncRNAs
  • organogenesis
  • thiophene acetic acid
  • ticarcillin
  • timentin
  • tomato
  • transcriptome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Plant Science


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