The Münch hypothesis of phloem transport has been significantly modified in the past 50 years and is now widely accepted. The short and therefore noncomprehensive survey remembers earlier data verifying the dependency of mass flow on metabolic control. Speed measurements and other strong arguments for the validity of the Münch hypothesis are examined, physicochemical obstacles still persist, but molecular detection and localization of sucrose transporters inside the sieve-tube system are in accordance with the mass flow mechanism. Taking into account source–sink control, the lateral sinks pose new problems, unless acceptance of a continuous control along the conduits improves the theory. A view into future research is advised: the gymnosperm sieve cell system seems to act as a super relay system consisting of a chain of “micro-Münch”-systems.
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 13, 2004
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