Anatomical features associated with water transport in imperforate tracheary elements of vessel-bearing angiosperms

Y. Sano, H. Morris, H. Shimada, L.P. Ronse De Craene, S. Jansen

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74 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Methods
Visualization of water transport was studied in 15 angiosperm species by dye injection and cryo-scanning electron microscopy. Structural features of ITEs were examined using light and electron microscopy.

Key Results
ITEs connected to each other by pit pairs with complete pit membranes contributed to water transport, while cells showing pit membranes with perforations up to 2 µm were hydraulically not functional. A close relationship was found between pit diameter and pit density, with both characters significantly higher in conductive than in non-conductive cells. In species with both conductive and non-conductive ITEs, a larger diameter was characteristic of the conductive cells. Water transport showed no apparent relationship with the length of ITEs and vessel grouping.

Conclusions
The structure and density of pits between ITEs represent the main anatomical characters determining water transport. The pit membrane structure of ITEs provides a reliable, but practically challenging, criterion to determine their conductive status. It is suggested that the term tracheids should strictly be used for conductive ITEs, while fibre-tracheids and libriform fibres are non-conductive
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)953-964
JournalAnnals of Botany
Volume107
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPrint publication - 8 Mar 2011
Externally publishedYes

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