, Volume 98, Issue 2, pp 157–163 | Cite as

A simple bioassay for detecting “antitranspirant” activity of naturally occurring compounds such as abscisic acid

  • D. J. Tucker
  • T. A. Mansfield


Isolated epidermal strips of Commelina communis L. showed progressively smaller stomatal openings when incubated in abscisic acid solutions ranging in concentration from 10-8 to 10-4 M. The effects were reproducible and did not appear to be affected by the presence of auxin, gibberellic acid or kinetin. This specificity suggests that this method may prove valuable as a quick, sensitive bioassay for abscisic acid and other related compounds which might be used as antitranspirants on field crops. The fungal toxin fusicoccin, previously reported to cause increased stomatal opening on intact leaves, partially reversed the closure induced by abscisic acid.


Acid Solution Abscisic Acid Kinetin Related Compound Gibberellic Acid 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Allaway, W. G., Mansfield, T. A.: Experiments and observations on the after effect of wilting on stomata of Rumex sanguineus. Canad. J. Bot. 48, 513–521 (1970).Google Scholar
  2. Fischer, R. A.: Stomatal opening in isolated epidermal strips of Vicia faba. I. Response to light and CO2-free air. Plant Physiol. 43, 1947–1952 (1968).Google Scholar
  3. —: After effect of water stress on stomatal opening potential. II. Possible causes. J. exp. Bot. 21, 386–404 (1970).Google Scholar
  4. Fujino, M.: Role of adenosinetriphosphate and adenosine-triphosphatase in stomatal movement. Sci. Bull. Fac. Educ., Nagaski Univ. 18, 1–47 (1967).Google Scholar
  5. Jones, R. J., Mansfield, T. A.: Suppression of stomatal opening in leaves treated with abscisic acid. J. exp. Bot. 21, 714–719 (1970).Google Scholar
  6. Majernik, O.: Responses of stomata of barley and maize to phenylmercuric acetate. Biol. Plantarum 12, 419–423 (1970).Google Scholar
  7. Mansfield, T. A.: Stomatal behaviour following treatment with auxin-like substances and phenylmercuric acetate. New Phytol. 66, 325–330 (1967).Google Scholar
  8. Meidner, H.: The effect of kinetin on stomatal opening and the rate of intake of carbon dioxide in mature primary leaves of barley. J. exp. Bot. 18, 556–561 (1967).Google Scholar
  9. Milborrow, B. V.: The identification of (+)-abscisin II [(+)-dormin] in plants and measurements of its concentration. Planta (Berl.) 76, 93–113 (1967).Google Scholar
  10. Parkinson, K. J.: The effects of silicone coatings on leaves. J. exp. Bot. 21, 566–579 (1970).Google Scholar
  11. Squire, G. R., Jones, M. B.: Studies on the mechanisms of action of the antitranspirant phenylmercuric acetate, and its penetration into the mesophyll. J. exp. Bot. (in the press).Google Scholar
  12. Tal, M., Imber, D., Itai, C.: Abnormal stomatal behaviour and hormonal imbalance in flacca, a wilty mutant of tomato. I. Root effect and kinetin-like activity. Plant Physiol. 46, 367–372 (1970).Google Scholar
  13. ———: Abnormal stomatal behaviour and hormonal imbalance in flacca, a wilty mutant of tomato. II. Auxin and abscisic acid-like activity. Plant Physiol. 46, 373–376 (1970).Google Scholar
  14. Thomas, D. A.: The regulation of stomatal aperture in tobacco leaf epidermal strips. I. The effect of ions. Aust. J. Biol. Sci. 23, 961–979 (1970).Google Scholar
  15. Turner, N. C., Graniti, A.: Fusicoccin: a fungal toxin that opens stomata. Nature (Lond.) 223, 1070–1071 (1970).Google Scholar
  16. Waggoner, P. E., Pallas, J. E.: Saving the water spent by plants. U.S. Dept. Agric. Yearbook, 213–217 (1968).Google Scholar
  17. Willmer, C. M., Mansfield, T. A.: A critical examination of the use of detached epidermis in studies of stomatal physiology. New Phytol. 68, 363–375 (1969).Google Scholar
  18. ——: Active cation transport and stomatal opening: a possible physiological role of sodium ions. Z. Pflanzenphysiol. 61, 398–400 (1969).Google Scholar
  19. Wright, S. T. C.: An increase in the inhibitor-β content of detached wheat leaves following a period of wilting. Planta (Berl.) 86, 10–20 (1969).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. J. Tucker
    • 1
  • T. A. Mansfield
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesUniversity of LancasterUK

Personalised recommendations