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  • 1
    ISSN: 1365-3040
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: The effect of elevated [CO2] on biomass, nitrate, ammonium, amino acids, protein, nitrate reductase activity, carbohydrates, photosynthesis, the activities of Rubisco and six other Calvin cycle enzymes, and transcripts for Rubisco small subunit, Rubisco activase, chlorophyll a binding protein, NADP-glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, aldolase, transketolase, plastid fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase and ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylase was investigated in tobacco growing on 2, 6 and 20 m M nitrate and 1, 3 and 10 m M ammonium nitate. (i) The growth stimulation in elevated [CO2] was attenuated in intermediate and abolished in low nitrogen. (ii) Elevated [CO2] led to a decline of nitrate, ammonium, amino acids especially glutamine, and protein in low nitrogen and a dramatic decrease in intermediate nitrogen, but not in high nitrogen. (iii) Elevated [CO2] led to a decrease of nitrate reductase activity in low, intermediate and high ammonium nitrate and in intermediate nitrate, but not in high nitrate. (iii) At low nitrogen, starch increased relative to sugars. Elevated [CO2] exaggerated this shift. ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylase transcript increased in low nitrogen, and in elevated [CO2]. (iv) In high nitrogen, sugars rose in elevated [CO2], but there was no acclimation of photosynthetic rate, only a small decrease of Rubisco and no decrease of other Calvin cycle enzymes, and no decrease of the corresponding transcripts. In lower nitrogen, there was a marked acclimation of photosynthetic rate and a general decrease of Calvin cycle enzymes, even though sugar levels did not increase. The decreased activities were due to a general decrease of leaf protein. The corresponding transcripts did not decrease except at very low nitrogen. (v) It is concluded that many of the effects of elevated [CO2] on nitrate metabolism, photosynthate allocation, photosynthetic acclimation and growth are due to a shift in nitrogen status.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1365-3040
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Higher rates of nitrate assimilation are required to support faster growth in enhanced carbon dioxide. To investigate how this is achieved, tobacco plants were grown on high nitrate and high light in ambient and enhanced (700 μmol mol–1) carbon dioxide. Surprisingly, enhanced carbon dioxide did not increase leaf nitrate reductase (NR) activity in the middle of the photoperiod. Possible reasons for this anomalous result were investigated. (a) Measurements of biomass, nitrate, amino acids and glutamine in plants fertilized once and twice daily with 12 mol m–3 nitrate showed that enhanced carbon dioxide did not lead to a nitrate limitation in these plants. (b) Enhanced carbon dioxide modified the diurnal regulation of NR activity in source leaves. The transcript for nia declined during the light period in a similar manner in ambient and enhanced carbon dioxide. The decline of the transcript correlated with a decrease of nitrate in the leaf, and was temporarily reversed after re-irrigating with nitrate in the second part of the photoperiod. The decline of the transcript was not correlated with changes of sugars or glutamine. NR activity and protein decline in the second part of the photoperiod, and NR is inactivated in the dark in ambient carbon dioxide. The decline of NR activity was smaller and dark inactivation was partially reversed in enhanced carbon dioxide, indicating that post-transcriptional or post-translational regulation of NR has been modified. The increased activation and stability of NR in enhanced carbon dioxide was correlated with higher sugars and lower glutamine in the leaves. (c) Enhanced carbon dioxide led to increased levels of the minor amino acids in leaves. (d) Enhanced carbon dioxide led to a large decrease of glycine and a small decrease of serine in leaves of mature plants. The glycine:serine ratio decreased in source leaves of older plants and seedlings. The consequences of a lower rate of photorespiration for the levels of glutamine and the regulation of nitrogen metabolism are discussed. (e) Enhanced carbon dioxide also modified the diurnal regulation of NR in roots. The nia transcript increased after nitrate fertilization in the early and the second part of the photoperiod. The response of the transcript was not accentuated in enhanced carbon dioxide. NR activity declined slightly during the photoperiod in ambient carbon dioxide, whereas it increased 2-fold in enhanced carbon dioxide. The increase of root NR activity in enhanced carbon dioxide was preceded by a transient increase of sugars, and was followed by a decline of sugars, a faster decrease of nitrate than in ambient carbon dioxide, and an increase of nitrite in the roots. (f) To interpret the physiological significance of these changes in nitrate metabolism, they were compared with the current growth rate of the plants. (g) In 4–5-week-old plants, the current rate of growth was similar in ambient and enhanced carbon dioxide (≈ 0·4 g–1 d–1). Enhanced carbon dioxide only led to small changes of NR activity, nitrate decreased, and overall amino acids were not significantly increased. (h) Young seedlings had a high growth rate (0·5 g–1 d–1) in ambient carbon dioxide, that was increased by another 20% in enhanced carbon dioxide. Enhanced carbon dioxide led to larger increases of NR activity and NR activation, a 2–3-fold increase of glutamine, a 50% increase of glutamate, and a 2–3-fold increase in minor amino acids. It also led to a higher nitrate level. It is argued that enhanced carbon dioxide leads to a very effective stimulation of nitrate uptake, nitrate assimilation and amino acid synthesis in seedlings. This will play an important role in allowing faster growth rates in enhanced carbon dioxide at this stage.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1365-3040
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Acclimation of plants to an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration is a well described phenomenon. It is characterized by an increase in leaf carbohydrates and a degradation of ribulose 1, 5-bisphosphate carboxylase protein (Rubisco) leading in the long term to a lower rate of CO2 assimilation than expected from the kinetic constants of Rubisco. This article summarizes studies with transgenic plants grown in elevated pCO2 which are modified in their capacity of CO2 fixation, of sucrose and starch synthesis, of triosephosphate and sucrose transport and of sink metabolism of sucrose. These studies show that a feedback accumulation of carbohydrates in leaves play only a minor role in acclimation, because leaf starch synthesis functions as an efficient buffer for photoassimilates. There is some evidence that in elevated pCO2, plants grow faster and senescence is induced earlier.
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