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Ultrastructural Changes in the Cell Walls of Cambial Derivatives During Wood Formation in Indian ELM (Holoptelea Integrifolia)

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Sequential changes occurring in cell walls during expansion, secondary wall (SW) deposition and lignification have been studied in the differentiating xylem elements of Holoptelea integrifolia using transmission electron microscopy. The PATAg staining revealed that loosening of the cell wall starts at the cell corner middle lamella (CCML) and spreads to radial and tangential walls in the zone of cell expansion (EZ). Lignification started at the CCML region between vessels and associated parenchyma during the final stages of S2 layer formation. The S2 layer in the vessel appeared as two sublayers,an inner one and outer one.The contact ray cells showed SW deposition soon after axial paratracheal parenchyma had completed it, whereas noncontact ray cells underwent SW deposition and lignification following apotracheal parenchyma cells. The paratracheal and apotracheal parenchyma cells differed noticeably in terms of proportion of SW layers and lignin distribution pattern. Fibres were found to be the last xylem elements to complete SW deposition and lignification with differential polymerization of cell wall polysaccharides. It appears that the SW deposition started much earlier in the middle region of the fibres while their tips were still undergoing elongation. In homogeneous lignin distribution was noticed in the CCML region of fibres.


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