Regeneration of different genotypes of cocoa (Theobroma cacao L.) via somatic embryogenesis (Sci. Hortic.) ($)

The global demand for cocoa (from Theobroma cacao) has been increasing, but production has not kept up with demand due to global climate change, pest and disease issues, and low productivity due to old cocoa trees. Currently, grafting and seeds (produced by cross-pollination) are used to propagate cocoa, resulting in heterogeneous genetic backgrounds and thus varied production. Modern techniques would drastically increase the quality of cocoa plant material to increase production. Ramírez et al. have optimized the in vitro propagation of multiple Colombian and commercial/universal genotypes via somatic embryogenesis. In their article they describe the effects of culture media, type of explant and culture times on the generation of high numbers of secondary somatic embryos. This will help to reduce costs of in vitro propagation and will allow for the production of high-quality cocoa plant material. (Summary by Julia Miller) Scientia Horticulturae 10.1016/j.scienta.2017.10.040