2005 Student Research Conference:
18th Annual Student Research Conference

Science

Analysis of Fatty Acids in Elaiosomes of Trillium maculatum
Kelly E. Watters
Dr. Anne E. Moody, Faculty Mentor

The fatty acids of elaiosomes from seed capsules of Trillium maculatum are being analyzed to determine their identity and relative proportions. Elaiosomes are lipid-rich food bodies attached to the seed coat of seeds from ant-dispersed plant species. Studies on the chemical basis of ant-dispersal indicate that the lipids of the elaiosomes are the primary attractant for ants. Correlation of the lipid composition of the elaiosomes from plants with known genotypes to the dispersion patterns of seeds will be explored. The method of analysis to qualitatively identify and quantitatively measure the fatty acids of the elaiosomes includes conversion of the fatty acids to methyl esters by transesterification and the gas chromatographic analysis of these derivatives.

Keywords: elaiosome, Trillium maculatum, fatty acid, lipid, gas chromotography, ants

Topic(s):Chemistry

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 54-1
Location: VH 1010
Time: 3:45

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