Lithocyst in a fig leaf cell

Lithocyst in a fig leaf cell

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Credit: CLAUDE NURIDSANY & MARIE PERENNOU/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Lithocyst. Light micrograph of a section through the surface of a fig leaf Ficus sp. , showing a specialised cell known as a lithocyst. The lumen of the cell contains an outgrowth of the cell wall on which is deposited a concretion of calcium carbonate crystal (lime). The mass of calcium carbonate is itself known as a cystolith. Litho- cysts occur in relatively few plant species; the rubber plant (Ficus elastica) is one of the most common examples. The function of these specialised cells is unknown. Magnification: x200 at 35mm size.

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Keywords: botany, calcium carbonate, cystolith, ficus sp., fig leaf, leaf, leaf cell, leaf cystolith, leaves, light micrograph, lithocyst, nature, plant, plants

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