Zhu, YJ; Komor, E; Moore, PH: Sucrose accumulation in the sugarcane stem is regulated by the difference between the activities of soluble acid invertase and sucrose phosphate synthase, Plant Physiology, 115, 609-616 (1997)
To assess the relative importance of morphological and biochemical factors in the regulation of sucrose (Sue) accumulation in the sugarcane (Saccharum spp. hybrids) stem, we investigated morphological and biochemical correlates of Suc accumulation among parents and progeny of a family segregating for differences. In contrast to the parents, no relationship was observed between morphology and the level of Suc accumulation among the progeny. The level and timing of Suc accumulation in the whole stalk and within individual internodes was correlated with the downregulation of soluble acid invertase (SAI) activity. High SAI activity prevented most, but not all, Suc accumulation. There was a critical threshold of SAI activity above which high concentrations of Suc did not accumulate. This low level of SAI activity was always exceeded in the internodes of the lower-Suc-storing genotypes. However, low activity of SAI was not sufficient by itself to account for the Suc accumulation in the higher-Suc-storing genotypes. Major differences in Suc accumulation among the population were attributed to the difference between activities of SAI and Suc phosphate synthase, provided SAI is below the critical threshold concentration. This result is not unexpected, since the pathway of Suc transport for storage involves Suc hydrolysis and resynthesis.

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