Trees are a major component of the biosphere and have played an important part in the world's history and culture. With the modern challenges of global warming and dwindling fossil fuel reserves, trees, and in particular their wood, can provide solutions. Unfortunately, too little is known about the biology of these plants, due largely to a lack of appropriate techniques. In recognition of this, Wood Formation in Trees presents a variety of detailed techniques and protocols for the study of the cell and molecular biology of wood formation in trees. Internationally recognized experts, most of whom are the researchers who developed the techniques, speak with authority in this volume, and also provide first-hand tips and trade secrets to help the uninitiated master the techniques. The techniques reflect a hierarchical approach to the study of the developmental biology of wood formation: anatomical, biochemical and molecular-genetic.
Trees are a tremendous but vastly under-appreciated natural resource. In an age where the natural product is so often modified to suit modern tastes and industrial processes, it is essential to understand how the natural product is made. The techniques in this book provide that essential information about the process of wood formation in trees.
Table of Contents
Introduction. An Introduction to the Problems of Working with Trees. Wood Microscopical Techniques. Conventional (Chemical-fixation) Transmission Electron Microscopy and Cytochemistry of Angiosperm Trees. Chemical and Cryo-fixation for Transmission Electron Microscopy of Gymnosperm Cambial Cells. Deep-etching Electron Microscopy and 3-Dimensional Cell Wall Architecture. Secondary Ion Mass Spectometry Microscopy: Application to the Analysis of Woody Samples. Immunolocalization of the Cytoskeleton in the Secondary Vascular System of Angiosperm Trees and its Visualisation Using Epifluorescence Microscopy. Immunolocalization and Visualization of the Cytoskeleton in Gymnosperms using Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy. Cell Walls of Woody Plants: Autoradiography and Ultraviolet Microscopy. Cell Walls of Woody Tissues: Cytochemical, Biochemical and Molecular Analysis of Pectins and Pectin Methylesterases. Immunolocalization of Enzymes of Lignification. Sampling of Cambial Region Tissues for High Resolution Analysis. Biochemistry and Quantitative Histochemistry of Wood. Protein Analysis in Perennial Tissues. The Use of GUS Histochemistry to Visualize Lignification Gene Expression In Situ during Wood Formation. In Situ Hybridization. Random Amplification of Polymorphic DNA and Reverse transcription Chain Reaction of RNA in Studies of Sapwood and Heartwood.
"The editor is to be congratulated for producing this very informative collection of papers with high quality micrographs, some of which are printed in color. The drawings included in the description of preparation protocols also give a perfect insight into practical laboratory work and procedures. In summary, this book is highly recommended and should become a standard not only for libraries, but also as a personal copy for scientists working with woody tissues. It also serves as a rich source of scientific information regarding both structural and biochemical aspects of wood formation."
-- Annals of Botany