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  • 1
    ISSN: 0931-1890
    Keywords: Key words Fracinus excelsior ; Nitrogen storage ; Protein remobilization ; 15N labelling ; Budget studies
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: Abstract  Storage and remobilization of nitrogen (N) were studied in ash trees (Fraxinus excelsior) under both field and greenhouse conditions. Experiments in the greenhouse providing 15N labelled fertilizer to the trees showed that the major quantity of N remobilized during subsequent spring was from the roots, and only a small amount from the stem. This corresponded with a loss of soluble N (proteins and low-molecular-weight compounds) from both roots and stem. On the two field sites, which differed in water availability, there was a decrease in bark N content during leaf growth, but on the dry site net N export from the bark was sustained throughout the whole vegetation period. Remobilized N was derived from soluble proteins and low-molecular-weight compounds on the moist site, which was demonstrated by the seasonal dynamics of a 56 kDa polypeptide in bark and wood. On the dry site, lower contents of soluble proteins were associated with smaller amounts of N remobilized compared to the moist site. Uptake studies of 15N labelled fertilizer indicated a higher contribution of current uptake to leaf N increment during spring at the dry site compared to the moist site. Differential N availability during the season had a decisive effect on the nitrogen storage dynamics at the two sites. Thus the influence of current N supply on N remobilization and storage as found in the greenhouse-grown plants could be verified under field conditions.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1365-3040
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: We have investigated the interactions between resource assimilation and storage in rosette leaves, and their impact on the growth and reproduction of the annual species Arabidopsis thaliana. The resource balance was experimentally perturbed by changing (i) the external nutrition, by varying the nitrogen supply; (ii) the assimilation and reallocation of resources from rosette leaves to reproductive organs, by cutting or covering rosette leaves at the time of early flower bud formation, and (iii) the internal carbon and nitrogen balance of the plants, by using isogenic mutants either lacking starch formation (PGM mutant) or with reduced nitrate uptake (NU mutant).When plants were grown on high nitrogen, they had higher concentrations of carbohydrates and nitrate in their leaves during the rosette phase than during flowering. However, these storage pools did not significantly contribute to the bulk flow of resources to seeds. The pool size of stored resources in rosette leaves at the onset of seed filling was very low compared to the total amount of carbon and nitrogen needed for seed formation. Instead, the rosette leaves had an important function in the continued assimilation of resources during seed ripening, as shown by the low seed yield of plants whose leaves were covered or cut off. When a key resource became limiting, such as nitrogen in the NU mutants and in plants grown on a low nitrogen supply, stored resources in the rosette leaves (e.g. nitrogen) were remobilized, and made a larger contribution to seed biomass. A change in nutrition resulted in a complete reversal of the plant response: plants shifted from high to low nutrition exhibited a seed yield similar to that of plants grown continuously on a low nitrogen supply, and vice versa. This demonstrates that resource assimilation during the reproductive phase determines seed production.The PGM mutant had a reduced growth rate and a smaller biomass during the rosette phase as a result of changes in respiration caused by a high turnover of soluble sugars (Caspar et al. 1986; W. Schulze et al. 1991). During flowering, however, the vegetative growth rate in the PGM mutant increased, and exceeded that of the wild-type. By the end of the flowering stage, the biomass of the PGM mutant did not differ from that of the wild-type. However, in contrast to the wild-type, the PGM mutant maintained a high vegetative growth rate during seed formation, but had a low rate of seed production. These differences in allocation in the PGM mutant result in a significantly lower seed yield in the starchless mutants. This indicates that starch formation is not only an important factor during growth in the rosette phase, but is also important for whole plant allocation during seed formation. The NU mutant resembled the wild-type grown on a low nitrogen supply, except that it unexpectedly showed symptoms of carbohydrate shortage as well as nitrogen deficiency.In all genotypes and treatments, there was a striking correlation between the concentrations of nitrate and organic nitrogen and shoot growth on the one hand, and sucrose concentration and root growth on the other. In addition, nitrate reductase activity (NRA) was correlated with the total carbohydrate concentration: low carbohydrate levels in starchless mutants led to low NRA even at high nitrate supply. Thus the concentrations of stored carbohydrates and nitrate are directly or indirectly involved in regulating allocation.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1365-3040
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: The cost of nitrogen storage to current growth was examined in relation to N availability in the biennial Cirsium vulgare. Plants were grown outdoors, in sand culture, with continuous diel drip irrigation of fertilization medium containing one of five different N concentrations. Plants grown at the highest N concentration stored twice as much N in their tap roots as did plants grown at the lowest N concentration. In high-N-grown plants, the storage of N reserves occurred during the period of maximum growth, at the same time as tap-root production. At the time of maximum biomass, stored N was also at a maximum. During the period following maximum biomass, no additional storage of N occurred. This pattern was observed despite frequent late-season leaf senescence which resulted in a large pool of potentially mobile N which could have been stored at no cost to growth. In low-N-grown plants, the production of tap-root storage tissue and the filling of that tissue with stored N were staggered. Tap-root production and growth occurred during the period of maximum growth, as in the high-N-grown plants. However, filling of the storage tissue with N occurred late in the growing season, when the pool of mobile N from senescent leaves was large. The utilization of this late-season N source occurred with little or no cost to growth, and this N is labelled, according to previous definitions, as ‘accumulated’. The costs of storing N in plants of the different N treatments were calculated using two models based on different growth constraints. In one model, the cost of N storage was represented as lost growth due to allocation of N to storage, rather than to the photosynthetic shoot (i.e. growth was assumed to be limited by carbon acquisition). In the second model, the storage cost was calculated as lost growth due to allocation of N to storage, rather than to the nitrogen-acquiring fine-root system (i.e. growth was assumed to be limited by nitrogen acquisition). In both models, the total cost of N storage was predicted to decrease as N availability decreased due to smaller storage pool sizes in plants of the low-N treatments. The cost of filling the tap root with stored N as a percentage of the total storage cost was also reduced as N availability decreased due to the occurrence of late-season accumulation. By relying, at least in part, on late-season accumulation, plants grown at the lowest three levels of N availability reduced total storage costs by 15 to 22%. The results demonstrate that plants are capable of adjusting their storage patterns in response to low nitrogen availability such that the costs of storage are reduced.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1365-3040
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Plants of Cirsium vulgare (Savi) Ten. were cultivated under five different nitrogen regimes in order to investigate the effects of nitrogen supply on the storage processes in a biennial species during its first year of growth.External N supply increased total biomass production without changing the relationship between ‘productive plant compartments’ (i.e. shoot plus fine roots) and ‘storage plant compartments’ (i.e. structural root dry weight, which is defined as the difference between tap root biomass and the amount of stored carbohydrates and N compounds). The amount of carbohydrates and N compounds stored per unit of structural tap root dry weight was not affected by external N availability during the season, because high rates of N supply increased the concentration of N compounds whilst decreasing the carbohydrate concentration, and low rates of N supply had the opposite effect. Mobilization of N from senescing leaves was not related to the N status of the plants. The relationship between nitrogen compounds stored in the tap root and the maximum amount of nitrogen in leaves was an increasing function with increasing nitrogen supply. We conclude that the allocation between vegetative plant growth and the growth of storage structures over a wide range of N availability seems to follow predictions from optimum allocation theory, whereas N storage responds in a rather plastic way to N availability.
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  • 5
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Biennial plants ; Carbon partitioning ; Nitrogen partitioning ; Storage ; Harvest index
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary Growth and nitrogen partitioning were investigated in the biennial monocarp Arctium tomentosum in the field, in plants growing at natural light conditions, in plants in which approximately half the leaf area was removed and in plants growing under 20% of incident irradiation. Growth quantities were derived from splined cubic polynomial exponential functions fitted to dry matter, leaf area and nitrogen data. Main emphasis was made to understanding of the significance of carbohydrate and nitrogen storage of a large tuber during a 2-years' life cycle, especially the effect of storage on biomass and seed yield in the second season. Biomass partitioning favours growth of leaves in the first year rosette stage. Roots store carbohydrates at a constant rate and increase storage of carbohydrates and nitrogen when the leaves decay at the end of the first season. In the second season the reallocation of carbohydrates from storage is relatively small, but reallocation of nitrogen is very large. Carbohydrate storage just primes the growth of the first leaves in the early growing season, nitrogen storage contributes 20% to the total nitrogen requirement during the 2nd season. The efficiency of carbohydrate storage for conversion into new biomass is about 40%. Nitrogen is reallocated 3 times in the second year, namely from the tuber to rosette leaves and further to flower stem leaves and eventually into seeds. The harvest index for nitrogen is 0.73, whereas for biomass it is only 0.19.
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  • 6
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Forest decline ; Carbohydrates ; Picea abies ; Growth ; Leaf area index
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary This is the first in a series of papers on the growth, photosynthetic rate, water and nutrient relations, root distribution and mycorrhizal frequency of two Norway spruce forests at different stages of decline. One of the stands was composed of green trees only while the other included trees ranging in appearance from full green crowns to thin crowns with yellow needles. In this paper we compare the growth and carbohydrate relations of the two stands and examine relationships among growth variables in ten plots. The declining stand produced 65 percent of the wood per ground area compared with the stand in which all trees were green because its foliage produced less wood at any level of leaf area index. The difference in foliage efficiency between the sites could not be explained by differeneces in climate, competition or stand structure. The declining stand appeared to have lower carbon gain as indicated by a smaller increase in reserve carbohydrates before bud break, and weaker sinks for carbohydrates as indicated by less use of the stored carbohydrates than the healthy stand. Thus, growth reduction was probably related to factors which affect both photosynthesis and, even more, the sinks for carbohydrate.
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Forest decline ; Spruce ; Nutrients ; Xylem sap
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary The nutrient relations (nitrogen, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and manganese) of the xylem sap of spruce trees, Picea abies (L.) Karst., growing at a healthy and a declining site in Northern Bavaria, were followed on a diurnal and seasonal basis between April and October 1985. There were significant differences between the two sites in the xylem sap concentrations of all elements investigated except nitrogen. Nutrient concentrations remained constant diurnally despite changes in transpiration and xylem water potential. However, during periods between precipitation events, concentrations of elements in xylem sap decreased with decreasing xylem water potential. Apparent differences in needle chlorosis of spruce trees at the two sites were associated with consistent differences in nutrient contents of their xylem sap and needles.
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2004-09-21
    Type: paper
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2004-09-21
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  • 10
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Key words Glutamate ; Glutamine ; Glycine ; 15N-NMR spectroscopy ; Urease
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract  Chamaegigas intrepidus Dinter is a poikilohydric aquatic plant that lives in rock pools on granite outcrops in central Namibia. The pools are filled with water only intermittently during the wet season, and the plants may pass through up to 20 rehydration/dehydration cycles during the summer rains. The potential nitrogen sources for the rehydrated plants are ammonium, which is only present at 10–20 µm, amino acids, particularly glycine, and urea, which is generally present at 20–30 µm. We show that urea can be utilised by plants in the field through the presence of urease in the sediments of the rock pools. Urease activity is higher in non-submerged than in submerged sediments, and it can survive 6 months of complete dryness at temperatures up to 60°C. Experiments with [14C]urea under laboratory conditions show that the roots of C. intrepidus are unable to take up urea; while 15N-nuclear magnetic resonance experiments show that [15N]urea is only metabolised to labelled glutamine and glutamate after ammonium has been released by the action of urease. Thus urease plays a vital role in allowing urea to be utilised as a major N source in this nutrient-limited aquatic ecosystem.
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