Send to

Choose Destination
Plant Physiol. 1968 Sep;43(9 Pt B):1545-59.

Cell wall dissolution and enzyme secretion during leaf abscission.

Author information

Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana 47907.


Cell wall changes leading to the formation of the separation layer during abscission of unifoliate (Phaseolus vulgaris) leaves are reviewed. Based on evidence from explants and intact plants, dissolution of pectic substances between cells of adjacent tissue regions (petiole and pulvinus) is necessary and may be sufficient to form the separation layer. Initially, the abscission zone is not structurally weak. The decline in break strength accompanying formation of the separation layer correlates with the appearance of pectinase activity. Pectinase activity is not detectable in freshly harvested explants but increases to about 0.09 mug per abscission zone at the time of 50% separation. At the same time, water extractable pectin fractions increase with a corresponding decline in the pectin fraction extractable with dilute acid. Separation is aided by internal shear forces generated by differential growth and hydrostatic pressure or both.


Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center