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Agronomy Journal Abstract -

Influence of Gas Mixtures on Cell Division and Root Elongation of Broad Bean, Vicia faba L.1


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 60 No. 3, p. 317-321
    Received: Dec 21, 1967

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  1. R. E. Williamson2



Roots were grown in airtight chambers in an intermittent nutrient solution mist. Various gaseous mixtures were used to determine the effects of short-term aeration deficiencies on cell division and root growth. Following treatments of 4 to 94 hours, the roots were aerated with air for 5 days. Root tip samples were prepared for microscopic examination at several times during and after treatment.

Oxygen levels of I to 10% without CO2 reduced the rate of cell division as much as 80% at the end of a 94- hour treatment; however, cell division resumed rapidly after treatment. Nitrogen reduced cell division in secondary roots within 15 minutes, stopped all division within 94 hours, and frequently killed primary root tips. After being returned to air, the rate of cell division in the old secondary root system was approximately 70% of normal within 48 hours, but few new roots developed. Mixtures of gases containing 1 to 10% O2 plus enough CO2 to equal 91% killed part of the secondary root system but rarely killed the primary root tip. These data show that either zero 02 or high CO2 for only 94 hours injures the root system of Vicia faba L. and that high CO2 is more injurious than zero 02.

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