Spring.wmf (18300 bytes) Plant Physiology (Biology 327)  - Dr. Stephen G. Saupe;  College of St. Benedict/ St. John's University;  Biology Department; Collegeville, MN  56321; (320) 363 - 2782; (320) 363 - 3202, fax;    ssaupe@csbsju.edu

Review Guide - Exam 4- S'09

     The exam will be a mixture of objective (e.g., multiple choice, matching, definitions, fill-in-blank) and subjective (non-objective) questions.  The subjective questions could include completing/analyzing diagrams or experiments, short answers (require a few sentences) and essays (longer).  I recommend that you use a pencil.  The exam is designed to take about 2 hours.  In general, the exam could include:  (1) anything covered in class; (2) lecture notes on-line pertaining to material covered in class; (3) study sheets, handouts or other materials used/assigned in class; and (4) questions from videos or AV materials seen in lecture.  There are
quiz questions posted online and essay questions that you might find helpful to review. 

    The final exam is scheduled for Thursday, May 7 at 8:00 AM. 

    Below is a brief summary of the main topics that are "fair game" for the exam. 

    This exam will be 'open book' - In other words, you will be permitted to bring any resources to the exam that you want.  This means that the exam will focus largely on testing your understanding of plant physiological processes, rather than your memory.  Thus, be sure to focus on understanding how things work.   

Plant Hormones:


Phytochrome & Photomorphogenesis


Spring Wildflowers

Comprehensive Section - There will be a comprehensive component to the exam.  This part of the exam is designed to "tie" together various aspects of the course and focus on major themes.  Questions on the comprehensive portion of the exam may be selected from among the following:

  1. Consider an hydrogen atom that is part of a water molecule in the soil.  Describe the pathway that the atom would take from the soil to becoming part of starch in the root system of a bean plant.  Be sure to include a discussion of the major processes that the molecule would be involved in.   A detailed diagram or concept map is acceptable, as long as it is accurately and detailed labeled.  Be reasonably detailed about the cells and structures through which it would pass.
  2. Describe the importance of importance of proton pumps in plants.  Answer such questions as:  What are they? What do they do? Where are they found?  How do they work? In what processes are they involved?
  3. Describe the importance of the enzyme PEPcarboxylase (reactions catalyzed, function, places it acts)
  4. Aristotle (ca. 335) said:  �The�the roots of plants are similar to the mouths of animals, both serving for the absorption of food.�  Analyze this statement.  Explain why Aristotle's idea could sound sensible to people today and how it disagrees with our modern view of plant physiology.
  5. We�ve learned that some varieties of lettuce (e.g., Lactuca sativa var. Grand Rapids) germinate poorly, if at all, in the dark.  These light-requiring seeds use phytochrome as the photoreceptor for this response.  The data supplied in Table 1 were collected to understand the transducing mechanism involved in this response.  Using these data, develop a model to explain the action and interaction of each of the hormones on lettuce seed germination.  Explain how the hormones are related to exposure (light vs. dark) and phytochrome.  Be specific and include details.   

Table 1:  Effect of plant hormones, alone and in various combinations, on lettuce seed germination in the dark

[GA] mM

% Germination

Control (no addition)

+ kinetin


+ ABA + kinetin





















  1. The following is a listing of some of the important terms/concepts that we covered during the year.  You may be asked to define and/or give examples of a sampling.
  • abscission

  • acid growth hypothesis

  • action spectrum

  • amyloplast

  • apical dominance

  • apical hook

  • apical meristem

  • basipetal

  • bioassay

  • bolting

  • boundary layer

  • bulk flow

  • calcium bridges

  • casparian strip

  • catalase

  • cavitation

  • cellulose

  • circumnutation

  • climacteric

  • cohesion-tension theory

  • coleoptile

  • dormancy

  • endodermis

  • etiolation

  • field capacity

  • fluence

  • germination

  • gravitropism

  • guttation

  • hydrogen bond

  • imbibition

  • irradiance

  • latent heat of fusion

  • lignin

  • nyctinasty

  • P protein

  • parthenocarpy

  • phototropism

  • phragmoplast

  • plasmodesmata

  • plasmolysis

  • plastid

  • pressure-flow hypothesis

  • protoplast

  • root pressure

  • senescence

  • skototropism

  • statolith

  • stomatal apparatus

  • stratification

  • suberin

  • symplast

  • thigmomorphogenesis

  • transpiration-photosynthesis compromise

  • triple response

  • tropism

  • vernalization

  • water potential


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Last updated:  05/04/2009     � Copyright  by SG Saupe