In vitro propagation of two wild yams, Dioscorea oppositifolia and Dioscorea pentaphylla, is reported. Multiple shoots were initiated from nodal explants on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium supplemented with 8.8 µM 6-benzylaminopurine (BAP) and 0.3% (w/v) activated charcoal. Root induction was also achieved simultaneously from the base of the shoots in the same medium. Individual shoots with a minimum of one node were excised and rooted in vitro on MS medium with 2.67 µM α-naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA) or ex vitro rooted on by treatment with 49 µM indole-3-butyric acid (IBA) for 30 min. Regenerants acclimatized in soil-rite showed vigorous shoot growth (within 2 weeks) and after 5 - 6 months were suitable for planting. Plantlets also developed tubers on MS medium with 8.8 µM 6-benzylaminopurine (BAP).
Key words: Dioscorea, diosgenin, microtuber, nodal culture.
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