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Development of successive cambia and formation of flat stems in Rhynchosia pyramidalis (Lam.) Urb. (Fabaceae)

Moya, Roger, Gondaliya, Amit D., Rajput, Kishore S.
Plant biosystems 2018 v.152 no.5 pp. 1031-1038
Rhynchosia, cambium, growth rings, parenchyma (plant tissue), sieve elements, stems
Stem flattening in Rhynchosia pyramidalis (Fabaceae) is achieved by the development of crescent-shaped successive cambia on two opposite sides of the stem (referred hereafter as distal side). Other lateral sides of the stem (adjacent to supporting host and its opposite side, referred as proximal sides) usually possess single cambium. In the young stems, parenchymatous cells located outside to protophloem of distal side dedifferentiate and develop small segments of cambium. Concomitant to bidirectional differentiation of the secondary xylem and phloem, these newly developed cambial segments also extend in tangential directions. Differential activity of newly developed crescent-shaped cambial segments deposits more secondary xylem at median position as compared to their terminal ends of the stem on distal side; consequently, it pushes the cambial segment outside, thus resulting in crescent-shaped arcs of the cambia only on two opposite sides. After the production of 1–2 mm of secondary xylem, they cease to divide and new segments of cambial arc develop on the same side in a similar fashion. Such repeated behaviour of successive cambia development consequently leads to the formation of tangentially flat stems. The secondary xylem is diffusely porous with indistinct growth rings and is composed of vessels (wide and narrow), fibres, axial ray parenchyma cells, while phloem consisted of sieve elements, companion cells, axial and ray parenchyma. Rays in both xylem and phloem are uni- to multiseriate and heterocellular. The structure of secondary xylem and development of successive cambia is correlated with climbing habit.