Alterations in Source-Sink Patterns by Modifications of Source Strength

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • Bean plants, trimmed to a simplified “double source, double sink” translocation system (the paired primary leaves serving as the double source and the paired lateral leaflets of the immature first trifoliate leaf as the double sink) were used to study the magnitude and short-term time course of change in the allocation ratio (partition ratio) of assimilates translocated from the labeled primary leaf to its respective “near” and “far leaflet” sinks in response to an increase or decrease in the source strength of the opposite primary leaf (the “control” leaf). If the rates of net photosynthesis in the two primary leaves were similar, assimilates from the labeled source leaf partitioned to the leaflet sinks in the ratio of 5:1 or higher, the dominant sink being the leaflet “nearer” to the labeled source leaf. If the rate of net photosynthesis in the control leaf was increased substantially above that of the labeled source leaf, the rate of translocation from the labeled source to either the near leaflet sink or far leaflet sink remained unaffected, despite, presumably, a higher translocation rate from the control leaf, and hence a higher phloem pressure gradient (or increased cross-sectional area) in the transport pathway from the control leaf to the leaflet sinks. If the control leaf was excised, thus reducing the source leaf area by about a half, the translocation rate from the remaining source leaf rapidly doubled, the partition ratio becoming equal to unity. If the control leaf was darkened, the partition ratio adjusted to an intermediate value. Although export rates from the labeled source leaf were increased either by excising or darkening the control leaf, the rate of net photosynthesis in the labeled leaf remained constant.

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    Article (Published)
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    © 1980 American Society of Plant Biologists. This version of this article is open access and can be downloaded and shared. The original author(s) and source must be cited.
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    • Borchers-Zampini, C., Glamm, A. B., Hoddinott, J., & Swanson, C. A. (1980). Alterations in Source-Sink Patterns by Modifications of Source Strength. Plant Physiology, 65(6), 1116-1120. DOI: 10.1104/pp.65.6.1116.