Study of the nutrient distribution in root tips of the tropical forage Brachiaria
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A Brachiaria breeding project is being conducted at CIAT, Colombia to combine acid soil adaptation of B. decumbens with other favourable traits of Brachiaria species that are less adapted to acid soils. Micro-PIXE was applied to investigate nutrient uptake and distribution in root tips of different species grown in hydroponic culture under control and simulated acid soil stress conditions. Different sample measurement approaches were evaluated, including: (1) linear scans with single point measurements along the root axis; (2) mapping of whole root tips; and (3) mapping of root cross sections. Different tissue types could be distinguished on the base of differences in nutrient concentrations and/or Al stress. Al, if Supplied under nutrient stress conditions, increased P accumulation in the central vascular tissue of the meristematic and elongation zone of B. decumbens and B. brizantha. Furthermore, a negative correlation was found between Al and CI accumulation in the root cap of B. decumbens. (C) 1997 Elsevier Science B.V.
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