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SUMMARY

The effect of 0 to 100μM bicarbonate on stomatal opening in epidermal strips of Commelina benghalensis was examined in the presence or absence of fusicoccin in light or darkness. Low concentrations of bicarbonate (up to 10 μM in the absence and 25 μM in presence of fusicoccin) stimulated stomatal opening while higher concentrations inhibited. The enhancement of opening by low concentrations of bicarbonate and phosphoenol pyruvate (PEP), and prevention of bicarbonate stimulation by malate or oxaloacetate suggested PEP carboxylase as a CO2 sensor in the guard cells. However, the inhibition of PEP carboxylase did not completely suppress the opening caused by fusicoccin. The action of fusicoccin therefore appears to involve a site other than CO2 fixation, presumably through the stimulation of proton excretion.