Starch Utilization During In Vitro Rooting of Easy- and Difficult-to-Acclimatize Sea Oats (Uniola paniculata) Genotypes
Carmen Valero-Aracama, Michael E. Kane, Nancy L. Philman and Sandra B. Wilson
Starch content was evaluated during microcutting in vitro rooting of an easy- (EK 16-3) and difficult-to-acclimatize (EK 11-1) genotypes of Uniola paniculata L. (sea oats), a native dune species of the southeastern U.S.A. Excluding Week 0, EK 11-1 plantlets exhibited greater shoot starch reserves than EK 16-3. Starch content was lower in roots than in shoots at Weeks 6 and 9 and, during root elongation, root starch content decreased in both genotypes. The difficult-to-acclimatize genotype (EK 11-1) exhibited a lower shoot to root dry weight ratio and reduced leaf development compared to the easy-to-acclimatize genotype (EK 16-3). Sugar and starch reserves are reported to be critical for successful acclimatization. However, these results indicate that, while starch content is higher in EK 11-1 plantlets, it is insufficient for successful ex vitro acclimatization. This may be the result of a higher energy requirement of the extensive root system and the absence of photosynthetically competent leaves ex vitro.
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