Journal Article

Abscission of <i>Azolla</i> Branches Induced by Ethylene and Sodium Azide

Eiji Uheda and Sumio Nakamura

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 41, issue 12, pages 1365-1372
Published in print December 2000 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online December 2000 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI:
Abscission of Azolla Branches Induced by Ethylene and Sodium Azide

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  • Plant Sciences and Forestry
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular and Cell Biology


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Treatment with ethylene accelerated the abscission of branches of Azolla filiculoides plants. An Azolla plantlet treated with ethylene at 10 µl liter–1 divided into 4–5 fragments after a lag period of 6–8 h. Ethylene-induced abscission was effectively inhibited by cycloheximide and was associated with an increase in the activities of cellulase and polygalacturonase. At the fracture surface abscised after treatment with ethylene, dissolution of the primary walls of the abscission zone cells was apparent. However, the middle lamella between abscission zone cells was still present. Immunoelectron microscopy using anti-unesterified pectin (JIM5) and anti-methylesterified pectin (JIM7) monoclonal antibodies revealed the presence of both JIM5 and JIM7 epitopes in the wall between abscission zone cells of branches before abscission occurred. In the middle lamella remaining after ethylene-induced abscission, only JIM7 epitopes were observed. The features of ethylene-induced abscission described herein were different from those of the rapid abscission induced by sodium azide, which implies that they are mediated by different mechanisms. The possible mechanisms are discussed.

Keywords: Key words: Azolla filiculoides — Cell wall — Ethylene — Middle lamella— Rapid abscission — Sodium azide.

Journal Article.  3830 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry ; Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology

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