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*CIL – Cell Image Library accession number. Please use this to reference an image.

CIL:686*  Cite 

The plastids of plants germinated in the dark are termed etioplasts and possess quasi-crystalline structures termed prolammelar bodies that contain the phospholipid materials and chlorophyll precursors that are converted to green chloroplasts in response to light. The micrograph shows a corn (Zea mays) etioplast fixed after brief exposure to light. The prolamellar body has largely disappeared and thylakoid membranes are starting to form and stack.

Technical Details

Zea mays seeds were germinated in the dark, briefly exposed to light, and segments of coleoptile, excised, fixed with glutataldehyde, post-fixed with osmuim tetroxide, and embedded in epoxy resin. Thin sections were cut, stained with uranyl acetate and lead citrate, and observed using a Philips 300 transmission EM. Images were recorded on film.

Biological Sources
NCBI Organism Classification
Zea mays
Cell Type
photosynthetic cell
Cellular Component
plastid part
Chris Woodcock
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Archival Resource Key (ARK)
Grouping This image is part of a group.
Image Type
Image Mode
transmission electron microscopy (TEM)
Parameters Imaged
electron density
Source of Contrast
differences in adsorption or binding of stain
Visualization Methods
uranyl salt
osmium tetroxide
lead salt
Processing History
raw unprocessed image
Spatial Axis Image Size Pixel Size
X 4183px 1.5nm
Y 2804px 1.5nm