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Plant Physiol. 1992 Apr;98(4):1429-36.

Theoretical Considerations when Estimating the Mesophyll Conductance to CO(2) Flux by Analysis of the Response of Photosynthesis to CO(2).

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Systems Ecology Research Group, San Diego State University, San Diego, California 92182.


The conductance for CO(2) diffusion in the mesophyll of leaves can limit photosynthesis. We have studied two methods for determining the mesophyll conductance to CO(2) diffusion in leaves. We generated an ideal set of photosynthesis rates over a range of partial pressures of CO(2) in the stroma and studied the effect of altering the mesophyll diffusion conductance on the measured response of photosynthesis to intercellular CO(2) partial pressure. We used the ideal data set to test the sensitivity of the two methods to small errors in the parameters used to determine mesophyll conductance. The two methods were also used to determine mesophyll conductance of several leaves using measured rather than ideal data sets. It is concluded that both methods can be used to determine mesophyll conductance and each method has particular strengths. We believe both methods will prove useful in the future.

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