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Plant Physiol. 1987 Nov;85(3):786-91.

Effect of altered sink: source ratio on photosynthetic metabolism of source leaves.

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Institute of Soils and Water Agricultural Research Organization P.O. Box 6, Bet Dagan 50-250, Israel.


When seven crop species were grown under identical environmental conditions, decreased sink:source ratio led to a decreased photosynthetic rate within 1 to 3 days in Cucumis sativus L., Gossypium hirsutum L., and Raphanus sativus L., but not in Capsicum annuum L., Solanum melongena L., Phaseolus vulgaris L., or Ricinus communis L. The decrease was not associated with stomatal closure. In cotton and cucumber, sink removal led to an increase in starch and sugar content, in glucose 6-phosphate and fructose 6-phosphate pools, and in the proportion of (14)C detected in sugar phosphates and UDPglucose following (14)CO(2) supply. When mannose was supplied to leaf discs to sequester cytoplasmic inorganic phosphate, promotion of starch synthesis, and inhibition of CO(2) fixation, were observed in control discs, but not in discs from treated plants. Phosphate buffer reduced starch synthesis in the latter, but not the former discs. The findings suggest that sink removal led to a decreased ratio inorganic phosphate:phosphorylated compounds. In beans (14)C in sugar phosphates increased following sink removal, but without sucrose accumulation, suggesting tighter feedback control of sugar level. Starch accumulated to higher levels than in the other plants, but CO(2) fixation rate was constant for several days.

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