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Occurrence of Sieve Elements in Phloem Rays

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Solitary sieve elements or groups of sieve elements were encountered in the rays of secondary phloem of Erythrina indica, Guazuma tomentosa, Acacia nilotica, Azadirachta indica, and Tectona grandis trees. These elements were short and possessed simple and compound sieve plates on their transverse to slightly oblique end walls. Each sieve tube element was associated with a single companion cell at their comers. Like axial sieve tube elements, the sieve tube elements of the rays showed slime (P-protein) plugs and cytoplasmic strands when functional and massive deposition of callose on sieve plates in nonfunctional sieve tube elements. The distribution pattern of these ray sieve elements differed among the species studied. The detailed structure and possible significance of these elements are discussed.


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