One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A yellow or brown carotenoid plant pigment which causes the autumn colors of leaves.
- ‘These are chlorophyll's shy cousins, the yellow pigment xanthophyll and the red-orange carotene.’
- ‘Remove both chlorophyll and the yellow pigment xanthophyll and the variegation is white.’
- ‘Concentrations of total carotenoids and total xanthophyll were greater for plants grown at low temperature.’
- ‘There is now an extensive literature based on in vivo and in vitro studies that deal with mechanistic aspects of xanthophyll pigment-dependent photoprotection.’
- ‘Retinal xanthophyll is a carotenoid, chemically related to vitamin A, whose absorption spectrum peaks at about 460 nm and ranges from 480 nm down to 390 nm.’
Mid 19th century: from Greek xanthos ‘yellow’ + phullon ‘leaf’.
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