Developmental and Structural Section
Pirone, Cary , Lee, David , Kim, Leung , Kress, John .
Aril Structure and Pigments in the Strelitziaceae.
PIGMENTED molecules perform important roles in the ecology, physiology, and development of plants. Primarily, these compounds can be assigned to four major classes, the chlorophylls, carotenoids, flavonoids, or betalains. Numerous lesser pigments also exist, but little information is available regarding their chemistry and biology. Here, we discuss several unidentified pigments found in the arils of three species in the Strelitziacae, Ravenala madagascariensis, Phenakospermum guyannense, and Strelitzia nicolai. Arils of the three species arise near the top of the funicle and are thus classified as true arils. Arillate cells of P. guyannense and S. nicolai form long filaments, while cells of R. madagascariensis are more tightly bound to form a continuous, waxy covering of the seed. Cells are of similar dimensions across the family; however, intracellular localization of pigment varies among species. Pigments in P. guyannense form elongate crystalline inclusions, while pigment crystals of S. nicolai, are more cuboidal in shape. Pigments in R. madagascariensis are found in numerous centrally located vesicles, approximately one micron in diameter. Currently, we are analyzing the chemical structures of these pigments. Of particular interest is a novel blue protein pigment complex discovered in R. madagascariensis.
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1 - Florida International University, Deparment of Biological Sciences, 11200 SW 8th St., Miami, Florida, 33199, USA
2 - Smithsonian, Botany, PO Box 37012, Washington, D.C, 20013-7012, USA
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Location: 303/Bell Memorial Union
Date: Monday, July 31st, 2006
Time: 11:15 AM