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Tree Physiol. 1992 Jul;11(1):85-94.

Carbon dioxide exchange of developing avocado (Persea americana Mill.) fruit.

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University of Florida, Tropical Research and Education Center, 18905 S.W. 280 Street, Homestead, Florida, USA.


Net efflux of CO(2) from attached avocado (Persea americana Mill.) fruit was measured periodically from three weeks after anthesis to fruit maturity. Net CO(2) exchange was determined in daylight (light respiration, R(l)) at a photosynthetic photon flux (PPF) greater than 600 micromol m(-1) s(-1), and in the dark (dark respiration, R(d)). Dark respiration and R(l) were highest during the early cell division stage of fruit growth (about 25 and 22 nmol CO(2) g(dw) (-1) s(-1), respectively) and decreased gradually until fruit maturity to about 1 and 0.5 nmol CO(2) nmol CO(2) g(dw) (-1) s(-1), respectively. Fruit photosynthesis, calculated from the difference between R(d) and R(l), ranged from 0.5 to 3.1 nmol CO(2) g(dw) (-1) s(-1). Net rate of CO(2) assimilation on a fruit dry weight basis was highest during the early stages of fruit growth and reached the lowest rate at fruit maturity. Net rate of CO(2) assimilation of fruit exposed to light was 0.4 to 2.5% of that for fully expanded leaves. Although the relative amount of carbon assimilated by the fruit was small compared with the total amount of carbon assimilated by the leaves, the data indicate that avocado fruit contribute to their own carbon requirement by means of CO(2) assimilated in the light.

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