MARILYN SCHALLER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARILYN SCHALLER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Leaf epidermis. Transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of a section through the lower epidermis of a leaf. At lower right the thick waxy cuticle (grainy layer), which reduces water loss, can be seen covering the epidermal cells. The outer walls of these cells are thickened. Above the epidermal layer are the spongy mesophyll cells and the air spaces between them. The cells contain numerous chloroplasts (dark) with pale staining starch grains, the products of photosynthesis. The air spaces allow efficient circulation of carbon dioxide, which is needed for photosynthesis, and oxygen, which is required for respiration. Magnification: x6300 at 7.5x8 inch size.
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