Leaf-miner Caterpillars and Cytokinins in the “Green Islands” of Autumn Leaves

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IN autumn, yellow or brownish leaves frequently have green spots surrounding small mining caterpillars (Fig. 1). The excrement of the caterpillars has been suggested to contain some substance or substances that preserve chlorophyll1. Recently these green islands have been found to contain considerable quantities of cytokinin, although the rest of the leaf, and even green leaves of the same tree, are practically free of any of this group of hormones2.

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  1. 1

    Hering, M., Biology of the Leaf Miners, (Junck, 's-Gravenhage, 1951).

  2. 2

    Engelbrecht, L., Flora, A, 159, 208 (1968).

  3. 3

    Linsmaier, E., and Skoog, F., Physiol. Plant, 18, 100 (1965).

  4. 4

    Heide, O. M., and Skoog, F., Physiol. Plant., 20, 771 (1967).

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ENGELBRECHT, L., ORBAN, U. & HEESE, W. Leaf-miner Caterpillars and Cytokinins in the “Green Islands” of Autumn Leaves. Nature 223, 319–321 (1969) doi:10.1038/223319a0

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