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The aim of this work was to characterize starch synthesis, composition, and granule structure in Arabidopsis leaves. First, the potential role of starch-degrading enzymes during starch accumulation was investigated. To discover whether simultaneous synthesis and degradation of starch occurred during net accumulation, starch was labeled by supplying(More)
Starch granules are principally composed of the two glucose polymers amylose and amylopectin. Native starch granules typically contain around 20% amylose and 80% amylopectin. However, it is possible to breed plants that produce starch with very different amylose and amylopectin contents. At present, the precise structural roles played by these two polymers(More)
Amyloid fibrils are a polymeric form of protein, involving a continuous beta-sheet with the strands perpendicular to the long axis of the fibril. Although typically implicated in diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and the transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, non disease-associated protein can also be converted into amyloid fibrils. Traditionally,(More)
The polymeric basis for the mechanical properties of primary plant cell walls has been investigated by forming analogous composites based on fermentation of the bacterium Acetobacter xylinus, either alone or in the presence of xyloglucan or pectin. Simultaneous small-angle X-ray scattering and uniaxial deformation experiments has shown how the cellulose(More)
Figure S1. Self-supporting hydrogel formation by hSAFs. Vials were (A) incubated for 30 minutes on ice, inverted and then incubated on ice for a further 30 minutes, or (B) incubated for 5 minutes on ice, 25 minutes at 20 ºC, inverted and then incubated for a further thirty minutes at 20 ºC. All samples were 1 mM in each peptide. Microrheology Gel strength(More)
Biocompatible hydrogels have a wide variety of potential applications in biotechnology and medicine, such as the controlled delivery and release of cells, cosmetics and drugs, and as supports for cell growth and tissue engineering. Rational peptide design and engineering are emerging as promising new routes to such functional biomaterials. Here, we present(More)
Reductions in activity of SSIII, the major isoform of starch synthase responsible for amylopectin synthesis in the potato tuber, result in fissuring of the starch granules. To discover the causes of the fissuring, and thus to shed light on factors that influence starch granule morphology in general, SSIII antisense lines were compared with lines with(More)
The environmental scanning electron microscope (ESEM) provides a highly relevant and controllable environment in which to study hydrated systems without the artefacts of other highly prepared specimens. The instrument facilitates control of turgor through hydration using different chamber vapour pressures. Deformation of a simple plant tissue-upper(More)
The environmental scanning electron microscope (ESEM) is a direct descendant of the conventional SEM, but also permits wet and insulating samples to be imaged without prior specimen preparation. A low pressure (up to around 10 torr) of a gas can be accommodated around the sample. When this gas is water, hydrated samples can be maintained in their native(More)
Bovine insulin has long been known to self-assemble in vitro into amyloid fibrils. We have observed a further higher-order self-association of the protein into spherical structures, with diameters typically around 50 microm but ranging from 10 to 150 microm. In a polarizing light microscope, these structures exhibit a "Maltese-cross" extinction pattern(More)