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Scientia Agricola

On-line version ISSN 1678-992X


MACHADO, Cynthia Torres de Toledo  and  FURLANI, Ângela Maria Cangiani. Kinetics of phosphorus uptake and root morphology of local and improved varieties of maize. Sci. agric. (Piracicaba, Braz.) [online]. 2004, vol.61, n.1, pp.69-76. ISSN 1678-992X.

Interspecific and intraspecific differences in the efficiency of utilization of soil phosphorus (P) are explained, in part, by plant morphological and physiological variations, which characterize the plant for nutrient acquisition. As part of a study on maize genotypes characterization for P-uptake and use efficiency, kinetic parameters of P uptake and root morphological characters were evaluated for six local and improved maize varieties, grown in nutrient solution. The kinetic parameters related to P influx were: maximal transport rate (Vmax), the Michaelis-Menten constant (Km), and the external concentration when net uptake is zero (Cmin). Measured root morphological characters were: root length, radius, and surface area. Shoot and root dry matter yield and the P content in these parts were also determined. Diferences among varieties were observed in the kinetic parameters Vmax and Km, root length and in root/shoot dry matter ratio. Lower Km values were better indicatives of P uptake ability of the varietes and were significantly correlated to higher dry matter production and P-efficiency index.

Keywords : genetic variability; phopshorus acquisition; kinetics parameters; root system; nutritional efficiency.

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