The Occurrence of Chlorophyll in Nelumbo seeds (Hugo de Vries Laboratory, University of Amsterdam)
Acta botanica neerlandica , Volume 11 - Issue 2 p. 228- 228
The green colour of the plumule in the seeds of Nelumbo has struck several observers in the past, but factual evidence regarding the chemical nature of the green-coloured substance was lacking. Before any physiological, ecological or phylogenetic significance can be attributed to the occurrence of a green pigment in an embryo of an Angiosperm, the chemical composition of the green matter must be established. To this end seeds of Nelumbo lutea (Willd.) Pers., kindly supplied by Dr. R. K. Godfrey, University of Florida, Talahassee, were opened and the dark green plumules taken out. The plumules were ground up with sand and a little CaCOs in the smallest possible quantity of solvent (acetone or ether) sufficient to extract the pigments. After decanting, the residue was washed with a small quantity of the solvent and the rinsing fluid was added to the first extract. After centrifugation at about 3000 r.p.m. the supernatant was concentrated in vacuo to approximately one-fourth of its original volume. A reference solution was prepared in the same way from dried Prunus leaves. Both solutions were tested by means of paper chromatography. The experimental work involved was carried out by the junior author (Ott). The green solution prepared from the Nelumbo plumules showed the typical red fluorescence of chlorophyll in UV light and the presence of chlorophyll was suspected. A comparison of the paper chromatogram obtained from both solutions on the same disc of filter paper showed that the extract of the plumules yields two spots corresponding with those produced by chlorophylls a and b of the reference solution in travelling distance, visual colour and relative intensity. A spot corresponding with that produced by yellow and brown pigments (xanthophyll, etc.) in the reference solution was also present, but carotene could not be detected in the Nelumbo chromatogram.
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A.D.J. Meeuse, & E.C.J. Ott. (1962). The Occurrence of Chlorophyll in Nelumbo seeds (Hugo de Vries Laboratory, University of Amsterdam). Acta botanica neerlandica, 11(2), 228–228.
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