Observations On Microfibril Organization of Douglas-Fir Bordered Pit-Pair Membranes By Scanning Electron Microscopy

J. L. Tschernitz, I. B. Sachs


Bordered pit-pair membranes of green sapwood Douglas-fir after alteration by pectinase enzymes followed by critical point drying were examined with the scanning electron microscope to confirm and expand results of earlier reported observations with other microscopic equipment. Micrographs of treated bordered pit-pair membranes with various degrees of pectin removal clearly showed the spatial relationship of torus structure. The technique used permits easy cleavage of the torus that, in turn, reveals in great detail the inner organization of microfibrils in the torus sandwich. Indications are that the initial pectinase dissolution of the torus is initiated in regions of plasmodesmata. Elasticity of the microfibrils in water or ethanol is vividly displayed.


<i>Pseudosuga menziesii</i> var. <i>glauca</i>;wood structure;enzymatic degradation

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