A Pea Mutant for the Study of Hydrotropism in Roots

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Science  25 Oct 1985:
Vol. 230, Issue 4724, pp. 445-447
DOI: 10.1126/science.230.4724.445


Plant roots grow in the direction of increasing soil moisture, but studies of hydrotropism have always been difficult to interpret because of the effect of gravity. In this study it was found that roots of the mutant pea `Ageotropum' are neither gravitropic nor phototropic, but do respond tropically to a moisture gradient, making them an ideal subject for the study of hydrotropism. When the root caps were removed, elongation was not affected but hydrotropism was blocked, suggesting that the site of sensory perception resides in the root cap.

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