Seeds sterilized with sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) retained sufficient amounts to interfere with studies of amino acid metabolism of the sterilized seeds during germination. Repeated washing in water did not remove NaOCl completely. However, soaking the seeds for 10 min in 0.01 n HCl removed NaOCl completely, without reducing germinability.Residual NaOCl reacted with the amino acids and reduced their concentrations in the incubation media. This reaction resulted in high production of CO(2) and low uptake of amino acids by the seeds. Decarboxylation of the amino acids occurred in the incubation medium outside the seed, was independent of the presence of seeds in the reaction, and therefore was not related to amino acid metabolism by the seeds. Effects of NaOCl on uptake, incorporation, and CO(2) production from indoleacetic acid were similar to those of the amino acids studied.
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