Characteristics of Soybean Seed Maturation: Necessity for Slow Dehydration1
- Clifford A. Adams,
- Maria C. Fjerstad and
- Robert W. Rinne2
Soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.] seeds harvested as young as 26 days after flowering (DAF) and allowed to air-dry in intact pods underwent a maturation process and were viable. Seeds shelled and dried outside the pod lost moisture more rapidly and had poorer viability than seeds slow-dried in intact pods. Maturation under slow dehydration allowed degradation of chlorophyll but fast-dried seed remained green. Greater amounts of inorganic phosphate, sugars, and soluble protein were leached from fast-dried seeds during subsequent imbibition, than from slow-dried seeds. The activity of several soluble enzymes remained the same in both fast- and slow-dried seed. Freshly harvested seed of all ages did not contain the germination-specific enzymes malate synthase and isocitrate lyase (of the glyoxylate cycle). When planted in moist sand these enzymes were produced by fresh seed only if they were 54 DAF or older. By contrast seeds as young as 33 DAF produced malate synthase and isocitrate lyase after 4 days germination if they were slow-dried before planting in moist sand. Seeds slow-dried 3 days before planting in moist sand produced small amounts of malate synthase and isocitrate lyase but fast-dried seeds never produced these enzymes. Seed maturation in soybeans is a necessary process brought about by slow dehydration with distinct effects on chlorophyll degradation and influence on the genome to allow production of germination-specific enzymes.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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