Course Title: Plant Cell and Tissue Culture

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Plant Cell and Tissue Culture

Credit Points: 24.00

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011

Course Coordinator: A/Prof Eddie Pang

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 99257137

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 223.01.70A

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment, also Mon evenings

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

No prerequisite courses. However, a knowledge of plant anatomy and physiology would be advantageous

Course Description

This course provides graduate-level knowledge of and expertise in animal and plant tissue culture theory and practice. This course has a vocational focus and introduces the student to the theory and practice of plant tissue culture and their role from modifying plants in plant biotechnology to the propagation of endangered plants and from modifying cell lines in biotechnology to the propagation of all lines for use in medical, microbiological and biochemical research. It prepares the students in particular for a career with plants, both in plant biotechnology and in environmental biotechnology. Students study media, sterilisation, explants, micro propagation, callus culture, organogenesis, embryogenesis, somatic variation, doubled haploids, interspecific hybrids, protoplast fusion and environmental conditions required. These are related to uses of tissue culture and compared with traditional techniques.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course will develop the graduate capabilities of knowledge ability, comprehension and applications of plants in cell and tissue culture systems, and how cell and tissue culture contributes to global sustainability. It will also develop the practical skills and confidence of students to successfully culture plant cells and tissues.

By the end of the course, students should be able to:
• Explain the various components of plant tissue culture media, e.g. minerals, growth factors, hormones, and what governs the choice of components,
• Explain the various steps taken to establish and optimise media for particular purposes in particular species, without the aid of texts
• Explain and perform some of the more advanced techniques, e.g. embryo rescue, and protoplasting.
• Establish and maintain plants in tissue culture and micropropagation, including morphogenesis
• Investigate and define a protocol to establish an unknown species and test its response
• Explain the various cell lines used in tissue culture and their origins and uses

Overview of Learning Activities

The learning activities included in this course are:
• Attendance at lectures where syllabus material will be presented and explained, and the subject will be illustrated with demonstrations and examples; completion of tutorial questions and laboratory projects designed to give further practice in the application of theory and procedures, and to give feedback on student progress and understanding;
• Completion of written assignments consisting of numerical and other problems requiring an integrated understanding of the subject matter; and
• Private study, working through the course as presented in classes and learning materials, and gaining practice at solving conceptual and numerical problems.

Overview of Learning Resources

Students will be provided with lists of relevant texts, library resources (Including appropriate journals) and freely accessible Internet sites. Other material will be provided in class.
Students will be able to access course information and learning material through the Learning Hub.
Recommended texts for this course are:

Dixon, R.A., and Gonzalez, R.A. (Eds) (1995). Plant Cell Culture: a Practical Approach, 2nd edn. IRL Press at Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.
Collin, H.A., Edwards, S.(1998). Plant Cell Culture. BIOS Scientific Publishers, Oxford, UK.

Overview of Assessment

Learning will be assessed by an end of semester examination, practical reports, poster presentation, and a seminar.

The breakdown of assessment is as follows:

Assessment                      Marks               Due Date
Theory examination          50%                 End of Semester
Practical reports                25%                 During semester
Tests (2)                               5%                  During semester
Poster presentation            5%                 Last 2 weeks of semester
Seminar                              15%                 Last 2 weeks of semester