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The anisotropy of the mesophyll and carbon di oxide capture sites in vicia faba leaves at low light intensities

The anisotropy of the mesophyll and carbon di oxide capture sites in vicia faba leaves at low light intensities

Journal of Experimental Botany 34(149): 1676-1694

Experiments are reported on the spatial distributions of isotopic C within the mesophyll of detached leaves of the C3 plant V. faba L. fed 14CO2 at different light intensities. Each leaf was isolated in a cuvette and 10 artificial stomata provided spatial continuity between the ambient atmosphere (0.03-0.05% vol/vol CO2) and the mesophyll from the abaxial leaf side. Paradermal leaf layers exhibited spatial profiles of radioactivity which varied with the intensity of incident light in 2 min exposures. At low light, when biochemical kinetics should limit CO2 uptake, sections through palisade cells contained most radioactivity. As the light intensity was increased to .apprx. 20% of full sunlight, peak radioactivity was observed in the spongy cells near the geometric mid-plane of the mesophyll. Diffusion of CO2 within the mesophyll apparently regulated the relative photosynthetic activity of the palisade and spongy cells at incident photosynthetically active light intensities as little as 110 .mu.E [einsteins] m-2 s-1 when CO2 entered only through the lower leaf surface.

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