In plants, genes involved in chlorophyll synthesis are located in both the nucleus and chloroplasts. Some variegated plants (with both green and white leaves and shoots) have mutations that prevent them from synthesizing chlorophyll throughout their leaves. In an effort to understand the genetics underlying chlorophyll synthesis, scientists performed the crosses shown in Figure 1.
Figure 1. Crosses of flowers on a variegated plant and the resulting progeny
(a) Describe how genetic information is carried in chloroplasts and mitochondria.
(b) Explain how the inheritance pattern shown in Figure 1 supports a role for chloroplast genes in the production of chlorophyll in the variegated plants.
(c) Ovules produced by an entirely green plant contain a rare mutation in a nuclear gene that is involved in chlorophyll synthesis, and the gene encodes a nonfunctional protein. Predict the most likely color of the leaves on plants that are produced when these ovules are fertilized by pollen from a wild-type green plant.
(d) Provide reasoning to justify your prediction.