Based in part on the previous version of this eLS article ‘Xylem Structure and also Function’ (2001) by Alexander A Myburg and Ronald R Sederoff.

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Xylem is the specialised organization of vascular plants the transports water and nutrients from the plant–soil interface to stems and leaves, and also provides mechanical support and also storage. The water-conducting duty of xylem is among the significant distinguishing features of vascular plants. Water is the primary solvent for plant nutrition and also metabolism, and also is important for photosynthesis, turgor and also for deliver of minerals, hormones and also other signalling molecules. The water-conducting xylem cells carry out an interior hydrophobic surface ar facilitating water transport and also mechanical strength. The xylem cells additionally support the weight of the water transported upward in the plant and also the load of the tree itself. For plenty of trees, xylem is wood, which has been crucial raw material for human being societies because antiquity, giving structural material, fuel and also fibre. Alteration of xylem through genetic design may command to much better energy sources, boosted raw materials and wood products.

key Concepts:


Xylem is the organization of vascular plants that transports water and also nutrients native the soil to the stems and also leaves.

Xylem plays vital ‘supporting’ function providing toughness to tissues and organs, to maintain plant architecture and resistance come bending.

The water-transporting cells of tires xylem room dead, and therefore the deliver of water is mostly a passive process with a very little active root press component.

In most woody plants, xylem grow by the department and differentiation of cells of a bifacial lateral meristem, the vascular cambium, which produces secondary xylem and phloem.

Xylem is wood, among the world"s many abundant and an important renewable raw materials.

The morphology, frequency and also distribution that xylem cell varieties determine its biological, physical and also chemical properties, and the resulting properties that wood.

The chemical and physical properties of wood determine its duty in the carbon cycle through its carbon save on computer capacity and also its resistance to decay when alive or dead, and in various sediments.

The chemical and also physical properties of wood room themselves figured out by the composition and interactions of the three polymers, cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin.

The difference between a woody and herbaceous plant relies on the expression of a small number of regulatory genes controlling the duration and also quantity the xylem formation.

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Genetic design has an excellent potential to construct xylem with desired qualities for details purposes.