Antibiotics and Antimycotics

Antimicrobials are used several ways in plant tissue culture. One use is maintaining sterility. Microorganisms infecting a plant tissue culture quickly deplete the medium of nutrients due to their rapid reproduction and growth rate. Inclusion of antibiotics and/or antimycotics in the culture medium can prevent or often treat a microbial infection. Many cell culture experts recommend that researchers determine the least effective dose of antibiotics and antimycotics, as they may have toxic effects on some organisms. Another use for these agents is selecting cells that have been stably transformed with an antibiotic-resistance gene. When antibiotic resistance is included in the construct along with the trans-gene, only successfully transformed cells can grow on medium containing that antibiotic.