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Acta Botanica Brasilica

Print version ISSN 0102-3306On-line version ISSN 1677-941X


PAIVA, Elder Antônio Sousa. How does the nectar of stomata-free nectaries cross the cuticle?. Acta Bot. Bras. [online]. 2017, vol.31, n.3, pp.525-530. ISSN 0102-3306.

In many glandular structures, departure from the cell is only one step in the process of exudate release to the plant surface. Here the set of events that lead nectar to the external environment is presented and discussed mainly for stomata-free nectaries. After being synthesized, the nectar or some of its component needs to be released to the environment where it performs its functions. Nectar precursors derived from cell metabolism need to cross several barriers, such as the cell membrane and cell wall, in order to become nectar. Then the nectar must cross the cuticle or pass through stomata in order to be offered to plant mutualists. Release through stomata is a simple mechanism, but the ways by which nectar crosses the cuticle is still controversial. Hydrophilic pathways in the cuticle and repetitive cycles of rupture or cuticle detachment are the main routes for nectar release in stomata-free nectaries. In addition to nectar, there are other exogenous secretions that must leave the protoplast and reach the plant surface to perform their function. The ways by which nectar is released discussed herein are likely relevant to understanding the release of other hydrophilic products of the secretory process of plants.

Keywords : animal-plant interactions; cuticular pores; nectar; nectar release; plant secretion.

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