Root extracts of Macrosyphonia velame an Apocynaceae native of Brazilian Cerrado, known as white velame have been popularly used as depurative and anti-syphilitic agent. The aim of the present research was to develop a micropropagation protocol for the in vitro conservation of M. velame in a germplasm bank. Seeds of velame collected in Sacramento, Tapira and Araxá, MG, Brazil, were used as initial explants. Nodal segments from axenic plantlets were inoculated on MS/2 medium supplemented with different concentrations (0.25, 5.0 and 1.0mg L-1) of BAP; kinetin; 2iP or TDZ. For in vitro rooting , plantlets (2cm high) were inoculated on MS/2 medium supplemented with IBA or NAA (1.0, 5.0, and 10.0mg L-1), maintained for 5, 10 and 30 days and sub-cultured to MS/2 medium for an additional thirty days before evaluating rooting. For acclimatization and ex vitro rooting plantlets were transplanted into Styrofoam boxes containing either Plantmax®, sand and soil one by one or in combinations (1:1) of sand/Plantmax®; sand/soil; Plantmax®/soil. For the in vitro conservation of M. velame in germplasm bank plantlets (3.5cm high) were inoculated on MS/2 medium supplemented with either 2% sucrose + 4% of mannitol or sorbitol; 2% sucrose + 4% mannitol or sorbitol + 2mg L-1 calcium pantothenate; 2% of sucrose + 4% of mannitol or sorbitol + 2mg L-1 spermidine. The proportion of seed germination was considered low, 33%, 4% and 2% for seeds collected in Araxá, Tapira and Sacramento respectively. Explants cultured on MS/2 medium without addition of cytokinin showed enhanced height (5.2cm), increased number of buds (8.6), proliferation of 4 shoots per bud and minimal (4%) proportion of vitrification. Plantlets acclimatized ex vitro developed better in Plantmax® substrate, most plantlets presented root formation and survival reached 40%. M. velame plantlets cultured for three months on MS/2 added with 2% sucrose + 4% mannitol + 2mg L-1 of calcium pantothenate, under germoplasma bank conditions presented 40% of survival.
Apocinaceae; tissue culture; medicinal plant; Cerrado; velame