, Volume 173, Issue 4, pp 433-441

Plasmodesmatal distribution and frequency in vascular bundles and contiguous tissues of the leaf ofThemeda triandra

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Small and intermediate vascular bundles and contiguous tissues of the leaf blade ofThemeda triandra var.imberbis (Retz.) A. Camus were examined with transmission and scanning electron microscopes to determine the distribution and frequency of plasmodesmata between various cell types. Plasmodesmata are most abundant at the mesophyll/bundle-sheath cell and bundle-sheath/vascular parenchyma cell interfaces, and their numbers decrease with increasing proximity to both thick- and thin-walled sieve tubes. Among cells of the vascular bundles, the greatest frequency of plasmodesmata occurs between vascular parenchyma cells, followed by that of plasmodesmata between vascular parenchyma cells and companion cells, and then by the pore-plasmodesmata connections between companion cells and thin-walled sieve tubes (sieve tube-companion cell complexes). The sieve tube-companion cell complexes of theT. triandra leaf are not isolated symplastically from the rest of the leaf and, in this respect, differ from their counterparts in theZea mays leaf. However, the thick-walled sieve tubes, like their counterparts inZea mays, lack companion cells and are symplastically connected with vascular parenchyma cells that about the xylem.