Understanding water deficit stress-induced changes in the basic metabolism of higher plants - biotechnologically and sustainably improving agriculture and the ecoenvironment in arid regions of the globe.
ABSTRACT Water is vital for plant growth, development and productivity. Permanent or temporary water deficit stress limits the growth and distribution of natural and artificial vegetation and the performance of cultivated plants (crops) more than any other environmental factor. Productive and sustainable agriculture necessitates growing plants (crops) in arid and semiarid regions with less input of precious resources such as fresh water. For a better understanding and rapid improvement of soil-water stress tolerance in these regions, especially in the water-wind eroded crossing region, it is very important to link physiological and biochemical studies to molecular work in genetically tractable model plants and important native plants, and further extending them to practical ecological restoration and efficient crop production. Although basic studies and practices aimed at improving soil water stress resistance and plant water use efficiency have been carried out for many years, the mechanisms involved at different scales are still not clear. Further understanding and manipulating soil-plant water relationships and soil-water stress tolerance at the scales of ecology, physiology and molecular biology can significantly improve plant productivity and environmental quality. Currently, post-genomics and metabolomics are very important in exploring anti-drought gene resources in various life forms, but modern agriculturally sustainable development must be combined with plant physiological measures in the field, on the basis of which post-genomics and metabolomics have further practical prospects. In this review, we discuss physiological and molecular insights and effects in basic plant metabolism, drought tolerance strategies under drought conditions in higher plants for sustainable agriculture and ecoenvironments in arid and semiarid areas of the world. We conclude that biological measures are the bases for the solutions to the issues relating to the different types of sustainable development.
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ABSTRACT: Farmers and breeders have long known that often it is the simultaneous occurrence of several abiotic stresses, rather than a particular stress condition, that is most lethal to crops. Surprisingly, the co-occurrence of different stresses is rarely addressed by molecular biologists that study plant acclimation. Recent studies have revealed that the response of plants to a combination of two different abiotic stresses is unique and cannot be directly extrapolated from the response of plants to each of the different stresses applied individually. Tolerance to a combination of different stress conditions, particularly those that mimic the field environment, should be the focus of future research programs aimed at developing transgenic crops and plants with enhanced tolerance to naturally occurring environmental conditions.Trends in Plant Science 02/2006; 11(1):15-9. · 11.81 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Photosynthetic light acclimation of leaves can result from (i) changes in mass-based leaf nitrogen concentration, Nm, (ii) changes in leaf mass:area ratio, Ma, and (iii) partitioning of total leaf nitrogen among different pools of the photosynthetic machinery. We studied variations in Nm and Ma within the crowns of two peach (Prunus persica L. Batsch) trees grown in an orchard in Portugal, and one peach tree grown in an orchard in France. Each crown was digitized and a 3-D radiation transfer model was used to quantify the intra-crown variations in time-integrated leaf irradiance, . Nitrogen concentration, leaf mass:area ratio, chlorophyll concentration, and photosynthetic capacity were also measured on leaves sampled on five additional peach trees in the orchard in Portugal. The data were used to compute the coefficients of leaf nitrogen partitioning among carboxylation, bioenergetics, and light harvesting pools. Leaf mass:area ratio and area-based leaf nitrogen concentration, Na, were nonlinearly related to , and photosynthetic capacity was linearly related to Na. Photosynthetic light acclimation resulted mainly from changes in Ma and leaf nitrogen partitioning, and to a lesser extent from changes in Nm. This behavior contrasts with photosynthetic light acclimation observed in other tree species like walnut (Juglans regia L.) in which acclimation results primarily from changes in Ma.Tree Physiology 04/2001; 21(6):377-86. · 2.85 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We investigated the role that manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD), an important antioxidant enzyme, may play in the drought tolerance of rice. MnSOD from pea (Pisum sativum) under the control of an oxidative stress-inducible SWPA2 promoter was introduced into chloroplasts of rice (Oryza sativa) by Agrobacterium-mediated transformation to develop drought-tolerant rice plants. Functional expression of the pea MnSOD in transgenic rice plants (T1) was revealed under drought stress induced by polyethylene glycol (PEG) 6000. After PEG treatment the transgenic leaf slices showed reduced electrolyte leakage compared to wild type (WT) leaf slices, whether they were exposed to methyl viologen (MV) or not, suggesting that transgenic plants were more resistant to MV- or PEG-induced oxidative stress. Transgenic plants also exhibited less injury, measured by net photosynthetic rate, when treated with PEG. Our data suggest that SOD is a critical component of the ROS scavenging system in plant chloroplasts and that the expression of MnSOD can improve drought tolerance in rice.Journal of Plant Physiology 05/2005; 162(4):465-72. · 2.70 Impact Factor