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Biochemical Basis for Partitioning of Photosynthetically Fixed Carbon between Starch and Sucrose in Soybean (Glycine max Merr.) Leaves

Steven C. Huber and Daniel W. Israel
Plant Physiology
Vol. 69, No. 3 (Mar., 1982), pp. 691-696
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4267278
Page Count: 6
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Biochemical Basis for Partitioning of Photosynthetically Fixed Carbon between Starch and Sucrose in Soybean (Glycine max Merr.) Leaves
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Abstract

The control of photosynthetic starch/sucrose formation in leaves of soybean (Glycine max L. Merr.) cultivars was studied in relation to stage of plant development, photosynthetic photoperiod, and nitrogen source. At each sampling, leaf tissue was analyzed for starch content, activities of sucrose-metabolizing enzymes, and labeling of starch and sucrose (by 14CO2 assimilation) in isolated cells. In three of the four varieties tested, nodulated plants had lower leaf starch levels and higher activities of sucrose phosphate synthetase (SPS), and isolated mesophyll cells incorporated more carbon (percentage of total 14CO2 fixed) into sucrose and less into starch as compared to nonnodulated (nitrate-dependent) plants. The variation among cultivars and nitrogen treatments observed in the activity of SPS in leaf extracts was positively correlated with labeling of sucrose in isolated cells (r = 0.81) and negatively correlated with whole leaf starch content (r = -0.66). The results suggested that increased demand for assimilates by nodulated roots may be accommodated by greater partitioning of carbon into sucrose in the mesophyll cells. We have also confirmed the earlier report (Chatterton, Silvius 1979 Plant Physiol 64: 749-753) that photoperiod affects partitioning of fixed carbon into starch. Within two days of transfer of nodulated soybean Ransom plants from a 14-hour to a 7-hour photoperiod, leaf starch accumulation rates doubled, and this effect was associated with increased labeling of starch and decreased labeling of sucrose in isolated cells. Concurrently, activities of SPS, sucrose synthase, and uridine diphosphatase in leaves were decreased. Four nodulated soybean cultivars were grown to maturity in a greenhouse. Fully expanded leaves at the top of the canopy were sampled during vegetative growth (45 days), at flowering (79 days), and at mid-podfill (120 days). In general, activities of SPS and uridine-5′-diphosphatase were highest during vegetative growth, and they decreased during reproductive development, whereas activity of sucrose synthase and leaf starch content tended to increase. Leaf starch was negatively correlated with levels of SPS (r = -0.71). The results support the postulate that sucrose-P synthetase is a key control point regulating the photosynthetic formation of sucrose, and, hence, starch.

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