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Insights into bamboo shoot degeneration

Wanqi Zhao, Ali Chen, Jiao Xiao, Zhengchun Wu, Guangyao Yang and Fen Yu

Bamboo shoot degeneration is a widespread phenomenon that can lead to bamboo forest loss and impaired sustainable management. However, little is known about the mechanisms of bamboo shoot degeneration. In this study, changes of morphology, anatomy and endogenous hormones were determined and analyzed at different degenerating stages of Phyllostachys edulis ‘Pachyloen’ shoot. The degeneration process was classified into different stages based on morphological changes of bamboo shoots. The stages were used as a basis for light microscopy study on the structure of the cells and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay on the endogenous hormones. The observations indicated that the absence of guttation was the earliest and most remarkable feature of degenerating shoots with the cessation of height growth, followed by gradually withered sheaths and yellowed shoot bodies. A comprehensive judgement criterion was provided including morphological features and nutritional components. Anatomical analysis showed both cellular protection changes, such as cell wall relaxation and increased silica cells which might be the caused by water deficit, and senescence changes, like condensed and degraded nuclei in degenerating shoots. Furthermore, not only the contents of endogenous hormones but also ratios of growth-promoting hormones to ABA in both the whole bodies and different growing regions were remarkably different between the degenerating and normal shoot, which indicates that ABA accumulation might be induce and promote the degeneration of bamboo shoot. In addition, starch grains degradation increased, which might accelerate the degeneration of bamboo shoots. These findings reveal that bamboo shoot degeneration is a complicated process including senescence activities and stress response, which provides new insights into the mechanisms of bamboo shoot degeneration.

To Cite this article: Zhao, W., A. Chen, J. Xiao, Z. Wu, G. Yang and F. Yu. 2021. Insights into bamboo shoot degeneration. Pak. J. Bot., 53(3): DOI:

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