Transient protein expression by agroinfiltration in lettuce

Qiang Chen, Matthew Dent, Jonathan Hurtado, Jake Stahnke, Alyssa McNulty, Kahlin Leuzinger, Huafang Lai

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

23 Scopus citations


Current systems of recombinant protein production include bacterial, insect, and mammalian cell culture. However, these platforms are expensive to build and operate at commercial scales and/or have limited abilities to produce complex proteins. In recent years, plant-based expression systems have become top candidates for the production of recombinant proteins as they are highly scalable, robust, safe, and can produce complex proteins due to having a eukaryotic endomembrane system. Newly developed “deconstructed” viral vectors delivered via Agrobacterium tumefaciens (agroinfiltration) have enabled robust plant-based production of proteins with a wide range of applications. The leafy Lactuca sativa (lettuce) plant with its strong foundation in agriculture is an excellent host for pharmaceutical protein production. Here, we describe a method for agroinfiltration of lettuce that can rapidly produce high levels of recombinant proteins in a matter of days and has the potential to be scaled up to an agricultural level.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMethods in Molecular Biology
PublisherHumana Press Inc.
Number of pages13
StatePublished - May 1 2016

Publication series

NameMethods in Molecular Biology
ISSN (Print)10643745


  • Agrobacterium tumefaciens
  • Agroinfiltration
  • Antibodies
  • Biotechnology
  • Large-scale production
  • Lettuce
  • Plant biology
  • Plant-made pharmaceutics
  • Recombinant protein
  • Transient expression
  • Vaccines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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