Pigments - Research Article from Macmillan Science Library: Plant Sciences

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 2 pages of information about Pigments.
This section contains 508 words
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Pigment Occurrence and Function

All plants contain chlorophylls and carotenoids in their leaves and other green plant parts. The chlorophylls are green and central to the process of photosynthesis. They capture light energy and convert it to chemical energy to be used not only by plants but by all animals.

The carotenoids and related xanthophylls are red, orange, or yellow and occur in green plant tissues along with chlorophylls in plastids, where they capture oxidizing compounds generated during photosynthesis. Without the protection they offer, photosynthesis cannot occur, so all photosynthetic tissue contains both the visible green chlorophylls as well as the masked orange carotenoids. Carotenoids serve another function as accessory light-harvesting pigments and photoreceptors that make photosyn-thesis more efficient.

Animals rely on plant carotenoids as their ultimate source of all vitamin A. Some of the carotenoids, including beta-carotene, possess a chemical structure that allows them to be converted to...

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This section contains 508 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Pigments Encyclopedia Article
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Macmillan Science Library: Plant Sciences
Pigments from Macmillan Science Library: Plant Sciences. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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