Upper V cauliflower investigation

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Over the past few weeks, Upper V has explored the topic of reproduction in organisms. After learning about the different types of reproduction within plants – sexual and asexual – we carried out an experiment to investigate how cloning of plants, in this case a cauliflower, can be achieved. This method, micropropagation, uses a totipotent stem cell from which an entire plant can be grown! After carefully cutting a thin section of a floret, this would be our explant, we sterilised it for 15 minutes. Once again we carefully removed our explant from the sterilising solution and gently placed it into an agar growth medium which contained all the nutrients needed for our little cauliflower clone to grow. All we had to do was wait a couple of weeks and almost like magic we had our new cauliflower plants!  Whilst thinking about cloning of plants we discovered that the various methods of micropropagation are being actively used to save endangered species of plants around the world. It is a highly effective way to reproduce these species in situations where very little source material exists.

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