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Anodic asymmetry of leaves and flowers and its relationship to phyllotaxis

Korn, R.W.
Annals of botany 2006 v.97 no.6 pp. 1011-1015
Syngonium podophyllum, Acalypha, Aglaonema, Calathea, Codiaeum variegatum, ornamental plants, leaves, phyllotaxy, flowers, plant veins, plant development, abnormal development, plant growth
BACKGROUND AND AIMS: New approaches are needed to evaluate the various hypotheses of phyllotaxis, and an examination of anodic leaf asymmetry may be one such approach. METHODS: Data were collected on the direction of midrib curvature and leaf coil in Syngonium podophyllum, the location of floral buds in Acalypha virginica, the position of secondary leaves of Croton variegatus 'Banana' and the relative size of half-lamina in Aglaonema crispum and Calathea ornata. KEY RESULTS: All five features were exclusively anodic with respect to the direction of the genetic spiral regardless of whether the spiral was clockwise or counterclockwise. CONCLUSIONS: Any phyllotactic mechanism must include some asymmetric component which cannot be explained by the prevalent hypotheses of contact parastichies, inhibitory fields, available space, pressure waves and auxin transport. The most favourable hypothesis is the primary vasculature explanation as it includes an asymmetric feature.