light, the light acting as the agent only in the ultimate step in chlorophyll formation. Sugar and other organic and inorganic compounds are presumably needed for the initial and continuous formation protochlorophyll. A short time after chlorophyll has been formed, the plant becomes capable photosynthesis and new sugars are thus supplied for further pigment synthesis. When such a seedling is deprived light, chlorophyll formation is halted by the direct removal the agent in the protochlorophyll-chlorophyll transformation; secondarily, sugar production ceases, and this affects the plant's ability to synthesize protochlorophyll, and other simpler precursors the chlorophyll molecule. We have seen here, however, that removing the plant from the light not only halts further pigment synthesis but affects the plant's ability to maintain the pigments it already has. The seedling returned to the dark fails to maintain both chlorophyll and carotenoids. In earlier work with oat seedlings (6) we had shown that when chlorophyll was formed, the carotenoids fall in concenitration, suggesting that the carotenoid molecule might be involved in the synthesis the chlorophyll molecule, perhaps by supplying the phytol group. In the light-independent destruction the chlorophyll molecule, if the backward reaction followed the same course as the forward reaction
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