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[EBOOK] UNITS, SYMBOLS, AND TERMINOLOGY FOR PLANT PHYSIOLOGY (A Reference for Presentation of Research Results in the Plant Sciences), Frank B. Salisbury, New York Oxford Oxford University Press

When one person wishes to communicate some information directly to another person, it is essential that the two speak the same language; that is, the words and symbols must have the same meaning for both persons. Such a thought provides one motivation for the preparation of this book, which is designed to be a reference source for plant physiologists and other plant scientists who are preparing their research results for publication or other presentation. The primary goal is to provide information about the use of units, symbols, and terminology in the plant sciences, especially plant physiology. In addition, we also provide some hints and instructions about writing and the preparation of posters and slide presentations for scientific meetings, including a format for presentation of growth-chamber data.

Section I introduces the basics. Its three chapters consider the use of SI units, rules for botanical nomenclature, and basic principles of statistics. Sections II, III, and IV present more detail in the fields of plant biophysics, biochemistry, and growth and development. These sections emphasize SI units whenever that is appropriate, but they also contain many lists of terms that are used in the plant sciences. The appendices contain the hints and instructions for writing and for preparing posters and slide presentations, plus a summary of guidelines for reporting environmental parameters for plant experiments in controlled environments. The chapter on biochemistry was modified from The Journal of Biological Chemistry; it is included here as a handy reference. Appendix c was also prepared for another publication. All other sections were originally prepared for this volume.

Each chapter was first prepared by one or more specialists in the field, and the authors then sent their chapters to several colleagues. As a result, the present chapters represent at least the beginnings of a consensus about the terms and sometimes symbols within each subfield. Although the time when all plant scientists agree on all units, symbols, terminology, and presentation techniques may be in the distant future (if it ever arrives), it is hoped that this book will bring us closer to such a meeting of the minds. After I had edited the manuscripts sent by the various authors, the entire book was sent to each author, who often commented about some chapters besides his or her own. This process was repeated several times over a period exceeding a decade (mostly because the project was set aside several times while other projects were being completed). During this long gestation period, two authors died and several others retired! In spite of the long period from conception to birth, every chapter includes significant changes made shortly before publication. The book presents the most current thinking of its authors and editor.

The chapters that include definitions of terms follow two different approaches: In some chapters, terms are arranged alphabetically; in others they follow an order in which one term builds upon the preceding term or terms (a mini-review of the subject). The choice of approach depended upon the author and the subject matter. In the non-alphabetical cases, the number of terms is rather limited so that it should be relatively easy to find a term by scanning the lists.

A few references are presented, especially where definitions are somewhat controversial. And controversy remains in plant physiology! Please submit suggestions for future editions to me or to the appropriate chapter author.

We have tried to remove inconsistencies and contradictions although some seem to be inevitable. We are aware of considerable redundancy, which should make the booklet easier to use as a reference source. An editorial inconsistency that I have decided to allow concerns the use of references. Many show only initials of authors, but when given names were known to me, I included them. We have followed a reference style that includes written-out journal names rather than abbreviations and more punctuation than is used in many current journals. This takes a little more space, but we believe it will make it easier for a reader to use the references.

Several secretaries were involved with the manuscript, but Laura Wheelwright did much formatting, and Mary Ann Clark must have spent the equivalent of an intense, full-time year working on the final formatting of camera-ready copy with much dfrection from Kirk Jensen, a Senior Editor at the Oxford University Press. The authors and I wish to express much appreciation to those diligent secretaries; their efforts were often “above and beyond the call of duty.”

[EBOOK] UNITS, SYMBOLS, AND TERMINOLOGY FOR PLANT PHYSIOLOGY (A Reference for Presentation of Research Results in the Plant Sciences), Frank B. Salisbury, New York Oxford Oxford University Press

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