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The dibenzodioxocin lignin substructure is abundant in the inner part of the secondary wall in Norway spruce and silver birch xylem

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A specific condensed lignin substructure, dibenzodioxocin, was immunolocalized in differentiating cell walls of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karsten) and silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) xylem. A fluorescent probe, Alexa 488 was used as a marker on the dibenzodioxocin-specific secondary antibody. For the detection of this lignin substructure, 25-μm cross-sections of xylem were viewed with a confocal laser-scanning microscope with fluorescein isothiocyanate fluorescence filters. In mature cells, fluorescence was detected in the S3 layer of the secondary wall in both tree species, but it was more intense in Norway spruce than in silver birch. In silver birch most of the signal was detected in vessel walls and less in fiber cell walls. In very young tracheids of Norway spruce and vessels and fibers of silver birch, where secondary cell wall layers were not yet formed, the presence of the dibenzodioxocin structure could not be shown.

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confocal laser-scanning fluorescence microscopy


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This investigation was funded by the Academy of Finland (grant no. 43091) and the National Technology Agency TEKES under The Finnish Forest Cluster Research Program WOOD WISDOM. This work is a part of the Center of Excellence in Plant Biology and Forest Biotechnology (project no. 164346) as granted by the Academy of Finland and the Ministry of Education of Finland. Wood samples and confocal laser-scanning micrographs were prepared at the Institute of Biotechnology, University of Helsinki.

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Correspondence to Kurt V. Fagerstedt.

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Kukkola, E.M., Koutaniemi, S., Pöllänen, E. et al. The dibenzodioxocin lignin substructure is abundant in the inner part of the secondary wall in Norway spruce and silver birch xylem. Planta 218, 497–500 (2004).

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