What is BY-2?
What is BY-2
BY-2 is a cell line of tobacco induced from a pith of Nicotiana
tabacum L. cv. Bright Yellow No.2 in 1968. This cell line was made by Dr.
Kawashima at Hatano Tobacco Experimental Station of Japan Tobacco and Salt
Public Cooporation (This company
is currently known as Japan Tobacco co.). The first
paper (as far as I know) on BY-2 was published in 1974 on the production of
ubiquinone. Professor T. Nagata (He is now in University of
found that this cell line is useful for the basic
research and he distributed this line to many laboratory in the world.
The efficient transformation of this cell line by Agrobacterium was found
by Prof. G. An (He is now in
when he visited to Nagoya University. This cell line
is currently used for many basic researches including cytokinesis (Prof.
Shibaoka's group and several other laboratories), auxin response and cell
cycle (Prof. Nagata's group and other labs), protein transport (my lab and
other labs) and many other works.
A guidebook of BY-2 is now in press [T. Nagata, S. Hasezawa and D. Inze
(eds.): Tobacco BY-2 cells. Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry, Vol.
The most well-known feature of BY-2 is that this cell line grow
very rapidly. Under our usual culture condition, the doubling time is
about 13 hours.
The synchronization of the cell cycle of BY-2 is easy and efficient.
Thus this cell is an ideal cell line to analyze the cell cycle in plants.
The other unique feature of BY-2 is the high competency of transformation
by Agrobacterium. Using our standard protocol over ten thousand of
transformants (somethimes higher than a hundred thousand) can be easily
Written by Ken Matsuoka, RIKEN PSC
Last modified on 17 June 2003.