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Crop Science Abstract -

Isolation of Parenchyma and Sclerenchyma Cell Types from the Plant Parts of Grasses


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 31 No. 3, p. 838-842
    Received: Mar 12, 1990

    * Corresponding author(s):
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  1. J. H. Grabber  and
  2. G. A. Jung
  1. M iner Institute, Chazy, NY 12921-0100
    U SDA-ARS, U.S. Regional Pasture Res. Lab., University Park, PA 16802



A simple and rapid mechanical method is reported for the isolation of parenchyma and sclerenchyma from the leaf blade, leaf sheath, and stem of grasses. Parenchyma and sclerenchyma cells were isolated by wet-sieving homogenized plant parts of orchard-grass (Dactylis glomerata L.) and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.). Parenchyma cells were collected in a fraction <150 μm in diameter, while sclerenchyma cells were retained in a fraction >1180 μtm in diameter. The purity of parenchyma was very high from the leaf blade and leaf sheath (>95%) and moderate from the stem (70- 85%). Sclerenchyma preparations contained >80% sclerenchyma fibers, with the balance consisting primarily of vascular tissue. This method provides a means of isolating parenchyma and sclerenchyma for studies of the chemical, digestion, and physical characteristics of their cell walls. This technique, however, cannot be used to estimate the proportions of cell types contained in grass herbage.

Contribution no. 8935 of the U.S. Regional Pasture Res. Lab., University Park, PA 16802.

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