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Plant Physiol. 1967 Mar;42(3):338-46.

Effect of Moisture Supply upon Translocation and Storage of C in Sugarcane.

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  • 1Physiology and Biochemistry Department, Experiment Station Hawaiian Sugar Planters' Association, Honolulu, Hawaii 96822.


Low moisture supply, controlled by 3 methods (adding NaCl to a complete nutrient solution, allowing a cut stalk to wilt, or withholding irrigation in the field), decreased the velocity and percentage rate of translocation of (14)C-photosynthate. The surplus sucrose not used in growth moved more slowly in the phloem and was stored in the stalk.Low moisture supply depressed translocation of (14)C-photosynthate more severely than it curtailed formation of (14)C-photosynthate in the same leaf: therefore, the effect of moisture supply upon translocation was primary.Low moisture supply retarded profile development in the stem, and a loss in moisture gradient was associated with a steepened slope of the profile. These results indicate a flow mechanism of translocation rather than diffusion.Results reported now and previously point to the operation of a slow pressure-flow mechanism particularly during the night but also during the day; superimposed upon this general mass transport is the more rapid process of phototranslocation which is independent of sugar gradients and which can cause the accumulation of sucrose at the storage-sink.During ripening, storage of sucrose in the stalk may be increased by withholding water because less sucrose is hydrolyzed in transit, less is used in growth, and the slowly moving sucrose has more time for transfer from the phloem to the storage parenchyma.

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