Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science




Dr. Shengwu Ma

2nd Supervisor

Dr. Jim Karagiannis

Joint Supervisor


Plants have emerged in the past decade as a suitable alternative to the current production systems for recombinant pharmaceutical proteins. This project aims to develop plants as a green bioreactor for large-scale and cost-effective production of human therapeutic proteins. Several binary plant expression vectors were designed and constructed to express a human protein. The constructed plant expression vectors were transferred to Agrobacterium prior to plant transformation. By using Agrobacterium-mediated plant transformation, both transient expression in N. benthamiana plants and stable expression of the human protein in Nicotiana tabacum cv.81V9 were achieved. Immunoassays such as Western blot and ELISA (the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) showed high-level accumulation of the recombinant protein. Functional testing showed that plant-derived protein retained the biological activity of the authentic protein. These results suggest that plants hold a promising potential to be a green bioreactor for a new source of human proteins.

Included in

Biology Commons