Assessing the Effects of Environmental Variables on Recombinant Protein Expression and Plant Morphology in Agroinfiltrated Nicotiana benthamiana
Nicotiana benthamiana is a plant used in biopharmaceutical industries to create medicinal products (e.g., immunoglobulins; vaccines, etc.) for use in the treatment of many diseases. The studies comprising this thesis include nutrient, temperature and spacing studies. The nutrient studies examined the relationship between nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium uptake under five different treatment levels of nitrate, phosphate, at five different pH levels in terms of morphological growth and total soluble protein (TSP) and immunoglobulin G (IgG) production. Temperature and spacing studies examined morphological response to these production factors. When plants were grown at five different pH levels, the IgG production differed among treatments; however, the level of TSP remained the same. When plants were treated with five different nitrate levels, and five different phosphate levels, IgG production remained the same, while TSP levels differed. When plants were treated with five different interactive temperatures and spacing treatments there were differences in morphology.