air space generation in leaves

Tae Hoon Kim tkim at
Fri Apr 1 22:26:20 EST 1994

I have briefly read the posts that pertain to "cell wall loosening." 
I am an undergraduate student, doing a senior thesis project involving a
particular developmental mutant of Arabidopsis. The most striking
features of this mutant concerning its leaf anatomy are an extensive generation
of air spaces (intercellular spaces) and an abnormal distribution of 
airspace within the lamina. 

I have looked at Pyke's paper on Arabidopsis leaf development, in particular
temporal aspects of airspace generation within the wildtype leaf. I also
have read Jeffree's paper on "genesis of intercellular spaces in developing
leaves of Phaseolus." A mechanism proposed for the air space generation
is mainly driven by the expansion of mesophyll cells after the cell wall
degradation. Previously, Avery's theory suggested that the expansion of
epidermis causes generation of air spaces. Avery's theory was rejected by
Jeffree as being overly simplistic. However, I also find that Jeffree's 
proposed mechanism of air space generation unsatisfactory. 

Are there other mechanisms describing how generation of air spaces occur?
Other suggestions or opinions concerning these matter. With respect to my
thesis project, Jeffree's hypothesis does not seem to explain my 
observation satisfactorily; however, I haven't made any EM observation
of the lamina of the mutant.


Tae Hoon Kim
tkim at

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