The use of time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) in plant biology is a relatively unexplored and quickly developing field. The majority of research in plant SIMS involves the application of ToF-SIMS to study dried wood tissues, and only a handful of studies apply SIMS on plant stems, roots, and/or seeds. Our project provides a brief description and review of previous work using SIMS on plant stems, roots, and/or seeds, along with an emphasis on the sample preparation in each study. Additionally, the use of Brachypodium distachyon (Brachypodium) as a model system for research on grasses has also become more prominent in plant biology. However, a review of the literature shows no previous work using ToF-SIMS to study the model plant, B. distachyon, has been done. This is of interest to use because Brachypodium as a model plant can provide insight on the biological studies of other C3 grasses, including small grain crops such as wheat and barley. Therefore, the interaction of grains of Brachypodium with a plant growth-promoting bacteria (PGPB), Pseudomonas, was characterized and chemically imaged using ToF-SIMS. The use of the delayed image extraction in ToF-SIMS provides chemical speciation of the Brachypodium seed surface and simultaneously captures the morphological features of the plant-bacteria model. This work provides an initial characterization of fatty acids (stearic acid, palmitic acid, and arachidic acid) present on the Brachypodium seed surface.


Analytical Chemistry | Microbiology | Plant Biology


Xiao-Ying Yu

Lab site

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL)

Funding Acknowledgement

The 2018 STEM Teacher and Researcher Program and this project have been made possible through support from Chevron (www.chevron.com), the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation (www.marinesanctuary.org), the National Science Foundation through the Robert Noyce Program under Grant #1836335 and 1340110, the California State University Office of the Chancellor, and California Polytechnic State University in partnership with Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the funders.



URL: https://digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/star/527


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