Longevity of Guard Cell Chloroplasts in Falling Leaves: Implication for Stomatal Function and Cellular Aging

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Science  12 Nov 1982:
Vol. 218, Issue 4573, pp. 680-682
DOI: 10.1126/science.218.4573.680


Guard cell chloroplasts in senescing leaves from 12 species of perennial trees and three species of annual plants survived considerably longer than their mesophyll counterparts. In Ginkgo biloba, stomata from yellow leaves opened during the day and closed at night; guard cell chloroplasts from these leaves showed fluorescence transients associated with electron transport and photophosphorylation. These findings indicate that guard cell chloroplasts are highly conserved throughout the life-span of the leaf and that leaves retain stomatal control during senescence.