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Planta. 2003 Oct;217(6):880-7. Epub 2003 Jul 3.

Effects of ethylene and abscisic acid upon heterophylly in Ludwigia arcuata (Onagraceae).

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Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1, Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, 113-0033 Tokyo, Japan.


In this study, we examined the effects of ethylene and abscisic acid (ABA) upon heterophyllous leaf formation of Ludwigia arcuata Walt. Treatment with ethylene gas resulted in the formation of submerged-type leaves on terrestrial shoots of L. arcuata, while treatments with ABA induced the formation of terrestrial-type leaves on submerged shoots. Measurement of the endogenous ethylene concentration of submerged shoots showed that it was higher than that of terrestrial ones. In contrast, the endogenous ABA concentration of terrestrial shoots was higher than that of submerged ones. To clarify interactions of ethylene and ABA, simultaneous additions of these two plant hormones were examined. When L. arcuata plants were treated with these two plant hormones, the effects of ABA dominated that of ethylene, resulting in the formation of terrestrial-type leaves. This suggests that ABA may be located downstream of ethylene in signal transduction chains for forming heterophyllous changes. Further, ethylene treatment induced the reduction of endogenous levels of ABA in tissues of L. arcuata, resulting in the formation of submerged-type leaves. Thus the effects of ethylene and ABA upon heterophyllous leaf formation are discussed in relationship to the cross-talk between signaling pathways of ethylene and ABA.

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