ScRNA-Seq is proving valuable for understanding developmental dynamics like the trajectory of undifferentiated meristematic cells into mature tissues (Rich-Griffin et al, 2019). It can also be used to elucidate tissue organisation and cell type composition of various plant organs (Tang and Tang, 2019). Analyses of single-cell transcriptomes have also been performed to define gene function at single-cell resolution (Ryu et al, 2019), and gain insight into adaptation to stresses such as high salinity or iron-deficiency (Yuan et al, 2018).
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Single cell analysis in plants involves the production of protoplasts, plant cells in which the cell wall has been digested. The processing of protoplasts on the Nadia Instrument for scRNA-Seq has been successfully demonstrated. Importantly, the plant protoplast RNA-Seq (ppRNA-Seq) on Nadia protocol takes into account the requirement for protoplasts to be suspended in a buffer of the right osmolarity to maintain viability without inducing transcriptomic changes. If the standard ppRNA-Seq buffer is not suitable for a particular plant cell type, different buffer compositions can be easily tested on the Nadia Innovate, the Nadia platform’s companion instrument.
Another consideration is the size of protoplasts obtained from different plant organs (e.g. root or leaf). While other commercial single-cell platforms cannot handle cells bigger than ~30 µm, the Nadia Instrument can process cells up to 60 µm in diameter.