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Concentrations of abscisic acid and other solutes in xylem sap from root systems of tomato and castor-oil plants are distorted by wounding and variable sap flow rates.

Else, M. A. and Davies, W. J. and Whitford, P. N. and Hall, K. C. and Jackson, M. B. (1994) Concentrations of abscisic acid and other solutes in xylem sap from root systems of tomato and castor-oil plants are distorted by wounding and variable sap flow rates. Journal of Experimental Botany, 45 (3). pp. 317-324. ISSN 1460-2431

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Abstract

We investigated if concentrations of abscisic acid (ABA) and other solutes measured in the first few droplets of xylem sap from detopped root systems, are good estimates of those in the transpiration stream as it enters the shoot-base of whole plants. Xylem sap from root systems of pot-grown tomato plants (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill., cv. Ailsa Craig), at the seven-leaf stage, was obtained by placing root systems in chambers pressurized to 0.3 MPa with air. The first sample was taken from the cut-surface of the hypo-cotyl stump within 30 s of removing the shoot. ABA, sucrose and other osmolytes were more concentrated in the initial 100–200 mm3 of xylem sap than in subsequent samples. This suggested the sap was contaminated and not unchanged transpiration fluid. The effect was reproduced on the same plant, several times, by recutting the hypocotyl prior to reassembling the sap collecting set-up and repressurizing. Similar results were found with castor-oil plants (Ricinus communis L., cv. Gibsonii). However, neither release of ABA from the cut surface of the hypocotyl stump, nor the effects of pressure to the roots caused the contamination. Instead, small radial pressures exerted by a rubber sleeve attached to the hypocotyl stump, for collecting the sap, were responsible. The effect was reproduced by lightly squeezing the hypocotyl by hand. The possibility was examined that reliable estimates of ABA concentrations in transpiration stream fluid may be obtained from sap samples taken immediately after rejecting the initial, contaminated 200 mm3. However, ABA concentrations in these later samples were also unsatisfactory since they changed with rate of sap flow. The problem may be overcome by analysing sap induced to flow through detached root systems at rates close to those of whole-plant transpiration.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Experimental Botany
Uncontrolled Keywords: Tomato ; Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. ; Castor-oil plant ; Ricinus communis L. ; roots ; root to shoot communication ; xylem sap ; abscisic acid ; sucrose ; transpiration stream
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Departments: Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > History
Faculty of Science and Technology > Lancaster Environment Centre
VC's Office
ID Code: 22428
Deposited By: ep_ss_importer
Deposited On: 30 Jan 2009 11:39
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 26 Jul 2012 16:00
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/22428

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