Mechanism of Leaf abscission

Mechanism of Leaf abscission:

It occurs at the base of the petiole that is internally marked by a different zone of few layers of thin-walled cells arranged transversally across the petiolar base. This region is termed as the abscission layer or abscission zone (fig is as shown below). The cells of the abscission layer are different from each other due to the dissolution of middle lamella and as well the primary cellulose walls beneath the influence of the raised activity of the enzymes pectinase and cellulose. At this phase the petiole remains joined to the stem only by vascular elements and very soon due to its pressure and own weight of wind, is detached from the stem. The broken vascular elements are soon plugged with gums or tyloses.

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 Figure: A leaf petiole exhibiting the abscission zone

The abscission is controlled by abscisic acid (ABA), a growth regulator synthesized mainly in chloroplasts. This is a general inhibitor of most processes, and the abscission layer forms and hardens beneath its direction.

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