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Analysing growth and development of plants jointly using developmental growth stages

Dambreville A., Lauri P.E., Normand F., Guédon Y.. 2015. Annals of Botany, 115 (1) : p. 93-105.

DOI: 10.1093/aob/mcu227

Background and Aims Plant growth, the increase of organ dimensions over time, and development, the change in plant structure, are often studied as two separate processes. However, there is structural and functional evidence that these two processes are strongly related. The aim of this study was to investigate the co-ordination between growth and development using mango trees, which have well-defined developmental stages. Methods Developmental stages, determined in an expert way, and organ sizes, determined from objective measurements, were collected during the vegetative growth and flowering phases of two cultivars of mango, Mangifera indica. For a given cultivar and growth unit type (either vegetative or flowering), a multistage model based on absolute growth rate sequences deduced from the measurements was first built, and then growth stages deduced from the model were compared with developmental stages. Key Results Strong matches were obtained between growth stages and developmental stages, leading to a consistent definition of integrative developmental growth stages. The growth stages highlighted growth asynchronisms between two topologically connected organs, namely the vegetative axis and its leaves. Conclusions Integrative developmental growth stages emphasize that developmental stages are closely related to organ growth rates. The results are discussed in terms of the possible physiological processes underlying these stages, including plant hydraulics, biomechanics and carbohydrate partitioning.

Mots-clés : croissance; développement biologique; morphologie végétale; dimension; mangifera indica; taux de croissance; stade de développement végétal; modèle mathématique; modèle de simulation; feuille; inflorescence; organe végétatif des plantes; réunion; france

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