Studies were conducted to determine whether certain physiological effects of gibberellic acid (GA3) on the peel of citrus fruits may be attributed to GA3 interaction with cellular membranes. Excised mesocarp tissue from pummelo [Citrus maxima (Burm.) Merrill] fruits was analyzed for electrolyte and K+ release over time in varying concentrations of GA3. Electrolyte leakage and K+ efflux was significantly reduced (up to 30%) when tissue was incubated in the presence of GA3. GA3 improved the viability of mechanically isolated protoplasts during 72 hr of storage at 7C, as shown by the use of fluorescein diacetate. These results suggest that some of the GA3-elicited responses in citrus fruits may be membrane related.
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