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Thursday, October 12, 2006

Need for CHLOROPLASTS!

Chloroplasts are specialised organelles found in all higher plant cells. These organelles contain the plant cell's pigment chlorophyll, hence provide the green colour. A large part of many of the SQA courses require pupils to analyse plant cells under the microscope and identify the chloroplasts of the cell. The standard plant always chosen is the pondweed Elodea. Elodea has lovely large chloroplasts that look rather like green smarties. You can actually see the organelles move around with in the cells cytoplasm under the microscope. However, sometimes it can be quite difficult to get hold of Elodea. Our technician’s suggested we look at moss cells instead of Elodea (Just the plain stuff that grows on stones and concrete). Our results are excellent. The chloroplasts are just as visible as they are in the pondweed. Big thanks to our fabulous technicians Pamela, Lynn and Sheila.

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