Rapidly Induced Wound Ethylene from Excised Segments of Etiolated Pisum sativum L., cv. Alaska: I. Characterization of the Response

Saltveit, M.E.; Dilley, D.R.

Plant Physiology 61(3): 447-450


ISSN/ISBN: 0032-0889
PMID: 16660312
DOI: 10.1104/pp.61.3.447
Accession: 050113715

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A rapidly induced, transitory increase in the rate of ethylene synthesis occurred in wounded tissue excised from actively growing regions of etiolated barley, cucumber, maize, oat, pea, tomato, and wheat seedlings. Cutting intact stems or excising 9-mm segments of tissue from near the apex of 7-day-old etiolated Pisum sativum L., cv. Alaska seedlings induced a remarkably consistent pattern of ethylene production. At 25 C, wound-induced ethylene production by segments excised 9 mm below the apical hook increased linearly after a lag of 26 minutes from 2.7 nanoliters per g per hour to the first maxium of 11.3 nanoliters per g per hour at 56 minutes. The rate of production then decreased to a minimum at 90 minutes, increased to a lower second maximum at 131 minutes, and subsequently declined over a period of about 100 minutes to about 4 nanoliters per g per hour. Removal of endogenous ethylene, before the wound response commenced, had no effect on the kinetics of ethylene production. Tissue containing large amounts of dissolved ethylene released it as an exponential decay with no lag period. Rapidly induced wound ethylene is synthesized by the tissue and is not merely the result of facilitated diffusion of ethylene already present in the tissue through the newly exposed cut surfaces. Previously wounded apical sections did not exhibit a second response when rewounded. No significant correlation was found between wound-induced ethylene synthesis and either CO(2) or ethane production.