Differentiation of Tissues - Root Apex
New cells generated from the divisions of meristematic cells start expanding and differentiating further. Epidermis, cortex and stele are formed. Stele is organized into xylem forming a star shaped central axis with columns of phloem between the points of the star, encircled by the pericycle. But what are the processes that control differentiation? Certain experimental studies involving surgical removal of small portion of root tips and observing their differentiation in culture has thrown much light on root development. Smaller pieces while differentiating produced monoarch and diarch type vascular organisation even though originally the plant root showed triarch pattern. This experiment indicates that a definite size of root tip is needed for realization of its full morphogenetic potential. But on further growth even these small pieces revert back to normal pattern of organisation of vasculature. If auxin at 10-5 M concentrations was provided in the culture exarch vascular tissue was formed. The ontogenic development of the primary vascular system of the root is simple.
The differentiation of the root tissues behind the apical meristems is summarized as follows: Periclinal divisions in the cortex cease near the level where the sieve elements mature: beyond this region the root undergoes rapid elongation and the maturation of the protoxylem usually takes place when the process of elongation is almost completed: Casparian strips develop in the endodermal cells before the maturation of the protoxylem elements and also before the appearance of root hairs. Phytohormones influence the development of secondary vascular tissue. When the roots are cultured on a nutrient medium containing Indole Acetic Acid (10-5 m) along with sucrose can induce secondary vascular tissue. Cytokinins and hexitols in small amounts promote secondary vascular tissue. Roots also depend upon vitamin 'B' for their proper growth.