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Life Science 2 Lab 2

Life Science 2 Lab 2 - Jonathan Price Amy Julia Life...

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Jonathan Price, Amy , Julia Life Science 2 Section 2 Discussion 2F Kyle Kerm January 26, 2008 Lab #2: TLC and Spectrophotometry Title: How environment and natural selection affect pigment composition in plants and algae. Introduction: Photosynthesis is the process by which plants convert light energy into chemical energy. Plants take in carbon dioxide and water vapor and converted into glucose and atmospheric oxygen. Glucose is then used in the plant for other processes for growth or ingested by other species which also use glucose for energy. Photosynthesis is either directly or indirectly the source of all energy for life. Pigments are important in photosynthesis because they are the chemicals which capture the light energy. There are three types of pigments in plants: chlorophyll, carotenoids, and phycobilins. Plants have different pigments to capture the maximum amount of light energy; the different pigments absorb different wavelengths of light, however only chlorophyll can convert the light into chemical energy, the other pigments help by gathering light for chlorophyll. The first experiment examined the affect of light on pigment composition in plants, whereas the second experiment evidenced the effects of evolution on pigment composition. In the first experiment, we expect the amount of light exposed to the plants during their development to affect pigment composition because one would expect that the barley, through ages of natural selection and evolution, would have a mechanism to recognize when there is a prevalent light source, so the plant can make an appropriate amount of the necessary pigments with which to capture light. We expect the two barleys to have different pigmentation because, superficially, the two barleys are differently colored, but in addition the amount of light the plant is exposed to triggers the plant to respond appropriately in respect to pigment synthesis. We are doing this experiment to examine the various responses that a plant exhibits given a change in environmental factors. The hypothesis for the experiment is that the plant will exhibit different pigmentation given a difference in amount of light the plant is exposed to. We hypothesize that the dark grown barley will have less pigments present than the light grown barley. The null is that there will be no change in pigmentation present.
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