Novel traits cannot be introduced into sweet cherries until an efficient transformation system has been developed. Until recently, no sweet cherry transformation protocol had been developed, and there was no evidence that genetic engineering or precision breeding in sweet cherries is being pursued. That said, tree fruit genomics has given us some new insight into cherry genetics and there are many active cherry breeding program around the world.
OSF has spent considerable resources over the past 10 years to develop a sweet cherry transformation protocol. To date we have achieved some limited success, and we are now able to transform sweet cherries. However, research and development continues to make this system more efficient before applying it in earnest in a new sweet cherry variety development program. We hope to be able to use this transformation system to develop nonbrowning cherries and other new, unique and exciting cherry products.