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  • 11
    ISSN: 1432-2048
    Keywords: Light climate ; Nicotiana (photosynthesis) ; Photosynthesis ; Ribulose 1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase-oxygenase ; Transgenic plant (tobacco, antisense DNA)
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) plants transformed with ‘antisense’ rbcS to decrease the expression of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase-oxygenase (Rubisco) have been used to investigate the contribution of Rubisco to the control of photosynthesis in plants growing at different irradiances. Tobacco plants were grown in controlled-climate chambers under ambient CO2 at 20°C at 100, 300 and 750 μmol·m−2·s−1 irradiance, and at 28°C at 100, 300 and 1000 μmol·m−2·s−1 irradiance. (i) Measurement of photosynthesis under ambient conditions showed that the flux control coefficient of Rubisco (C infRubisco supA ) was very low (0.01–0.03) at low growth irradiance, and still fairly low (0.24–0.27) at higher irradiance. (ii) Short-term changes in the irradiance used to measure photosynthesis showed that C infRubisco supA increases as incident irradiance rises, (iii) When low-light (100 μmol·m−2·s−1)-grown plants are exposed to high (750–1000 μmol·m−2·s−1) irradiance, Rubisco is almost totally limiting for photosynthesis in wild types. However, when high-light-grown leaves (750–1000 μmol·m−2·s−1) are suddenly exposed to high and saturating irradiance (1500–2000 μmol·m−2·s−1), C infRubisco supA remained relatively low (0.23–0.33), showing that in saturating light Rubisco only exerts partial control over the light-saturated rate of photosynthesis in “sun” leaves; apparently additional factors are co-limiting photosynthetic performance, (iv) Growth of plants at high irradiance led to a small decrease in the percentage of total protein found in the insoluble (thylakoid fraction), and a decrease of chlorophyll, relative to protein or structural leaf dry weight. As a consequence of this change, high-irradiance-grown leaves illuminated at growth irradiance avoided an inbalance between the “light” reactions and Rubisco; this was shown by the low value of C infRubisco supA (see above) and by measurements showing that non-photochemical quenching was low, photochemical quenching high, and NADP-malate dehydrogenase activation was low at the growth irradiance. In contrast, when a leaf adapted to low irradiance was illuminated at a higher irradiance, Rubisco exerted more control, non-photochemical quenching was higher, photochemical quenching was lower, and NADP-malate dehydrogenase activation was higher than in a leaf which had grown at that irradiance. We conclude that changes in leaf composition allow the leaf to avoid a one-sided limitation by Rubisco and, hence, overexcitation and overreduction of the thylakoids in high-irradiance growth conditions, (v) ‘Antisense’ plants with less Rubisco contained a higher content of insoluble (thylakoid) protein and chlorophyll, compared to total protein or structural leaf dry weight. They also showed a higher rate of photosynthesis than the wild type, when measured at an irradiance below that at which the plant had grown. We propose that N-allocation in low light is not optimal in tobacco and that genetic manipulation to decrease Rubisco may, in some circumstances, increase photosynthetic performance in low light.
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  • 12
    ISSN: 1432-2048
    Keywords: Biomass allocation ; Nicotiana ; Nitrogen nutrition ; Photosynthesis ; Relative growth rate ; Ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase-oxygenase (Rubisco) ; Transgenic plant (tobacco antisense DNA)
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract Wild-type tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) plants and transgenic tobacco transformed with antisense rbcS to decrease expression of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase-oxygenase (Rubisco; EC 4.1.1.39) were grown at 300 mol-m−2 · s−1 irradiance and 20° C at either 0.1, 0.7 or 5 mM NH4NO3. In high nitrogen (N), growth was reduced in parallel with the inhibition of photosynthesis when Rubisco was decreased by genetic manipulation. In limiting N, photosynthesis was reduced strongly when Rubisco was decreased by genetic manipulation, but growth was hardly affected. At all N levels, decreased expression of Rubisco led to a decrease in the amount of starch accumulated in the leaves. There was a large increase of the specific leaf area (SLA; leaf area maintained per unit dry weight in the leaf) in plants with decreased Rubisco. Increased SLA was associated with an increased inorganic and a decreased carbon contribution to leaf structural dry weight. The increased SLA represents a more efficient investment of photosynthate with respect to maximisation of leaf area and light interception, and partly compensates for the decreased rate of photosynthesis in plants with decreased expression of Rubisco. The changes of starch content and SLA were particularly large in limiting N, when growth rate was effectively independent of the rate of photosynthesis. Increased N availability led to a large increase of the shoot/ root ratio, but only a small increase in SLA. It is argued that N availability and the availability of photosynthate both regulate storage and allocation of biomass to optimize resource utilization, but achieve this via different mechanisms.
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  • 13
    ISSN: 1573-5036
    Keywords: atmospheric deposition ; δ15N ; δ34S ; forest decline ; nitrogen ; Picea abies ; stable isotopes ; sulfur
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
    Notes: Abstract Concentrations and natural isotope abundance of total sulfur and nitrogen as well as sulfate and nitrate concentrations were measured in needles of different age classes and in soil samples of different horizons from a healthy and a declining Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) forest in the Fichtelgebirge (NE Bavaria, Germany), in order to study the fate of atmospheric depositions of sulfur and nitrogen compounds. The mean δ15N of the needles ranged between −3.7 and −2.1 ‰ and for δ34S a range between −0.4 and +0.9 ‰ was observed. δ34S and sulfur concentrations in the needles of both stands increased continuously with needle age and thus, were closely correlated. The δ15N values of the needles showed an initial decrease followed by an increase with needle age. The healthy stand showed more negative δ15N values in old needles than the declining stand. Nitrogen concentrations decreased with needle age. For soil samples at both sites the mean δ15N and δ34S values increased from −3 ‰ (δ15N) or +0.9 ‰ (δ34S) in the uppermost organic layer to about +4 ‰ (δ15N) or +4.5 ‰ (δ34S) in the mineral soil. This depth-dependent increase in abundance of 15N and 34S was accompanied by a decrease in total nitrogen and sulfur concentrations in the soil. δ15N values and nitrogen concentrations were closely correlated (slope −0.0061 ‰ δ15N per μmol eq N gdw −1), and δ34S values were linearly correlated with sulfur concentrations (slope −0.0576 ‰ δ34S per μmol eq S gdw −1). It follows that in the same soil samples sulfur concentrations were linearly correlated with the nitrogen concentrations (slope 0.0527), and δ34S values were linearly correlated with δ15N values (slope 0.459). A correlation of the sulfur and nitrogen isotope abundances on a Δ basis (which considers the different relative frequencies of 15N and 34S), however, revealed an isotope fractionation that was higher by a factor of 5 for sulfur than for nitrogen (slope 5.292). These correlations indicate a long term synchronous mineralization of organic nitrogen and sulfur compounds in the soil accompanied by element-specific isotope fractionations. Based on different sulfur isotope abundance of the soil (δ34S=0.9 ‰ for total sulfur of the organic layer was assumed to be equivalent to about −1.0 ‰ for soil sulfate) and of the atmospheric SO2 deposition (δ34S=2.0 ‰ at the healthy site and 2.3 ‰ at the declining site) the contribution of atmospheric SO2 to total sulfur of the needles was estimated. This contribution increased from about 20 % in current-year needles to more than 50 % in 3-year-old needles. The proportion of sulfur from atmospheric deposition was equivalent to the age dependent sulfate accumulation in the needles. In contrast to the accumulation of atmospheric sulfur compounds nitrogen compounds from atmospheric deposition were metabolized and were used for growth. The implications of both responses to atmospheric deposition are discussed.
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  • 14
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Springer
    Oecologia 82 (1990), S. 355-361 
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Vine ; Xylem water flow ; Entadopsis ; Serjania ; Cyclanthera
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary A method for determining the mass flow rate of xylem water in thin stems under natural field conditions is presented. Diurnal courses of xylem water flow and stomatal conductance of the vines Entadopsis polystachya, Cyclanthera multifoliolata, and Serjania brachycarpa were examined in a tropical deciduous forest on the west coast of Mexico. E. polystachya (leaf area 23.6 m2) had a maximum water flow rate of 6.50 kg h-1 or 1.44 kg cm-2 stem basal area h-1; daily water use was 2.00 kg m-2 leaf area day-1. S. brachycarpa (leaf area 4.5 m2) and C. multifoliolata (leaf area 3.6 m2) had a maximum water flow rate of 0.72 and 0.19 kg h-1 or 0.63 and 0.92 kg cm-2 stem basal area h-1. Daily water use was 1.26 and 0.39 kg m-2 leaf area day-1, respectively. The daily courses of xylem water flow were strongly influenced by the orientation of the leaf area to irradiance and its intensity. While leaves of E. polystachya had a constant high stomatal conductance during the day, S. brachycarpa had a maximum stomatal opening in the morning followed by continuous closure during the rest of the day. In contrast to the woody species, the herbaceous C. multifoliolata exhibited a strong midday depression of stomatal conductance and wilting of its leaves. The leaf biomass accounted for 8% (Entadopsis), 16% (Serjania), and 23% (Cyclanthera) of above-ground biomass. The relation of sapwood area to leaf area supplied (Huber value) was 0.19 (Entadopsis), 0.18 (Serjania), and 0.06 (Cyclanthera) cm2 m-2
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  • 15
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Annual plants ; Biomass partitioning ; Nitrogen nutrition ; Relative growth rate
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary The hypothesis was tested that faster growth of nitrophilic plants at high nitrogen (N) nutrition is counterbalanced by faster growth of non-nitrophilic plants at low N-nutrition. Ten annual plant species were used which originated from habitats of different N-availability. The species' preference for N was quantified by the “N-number” of Ellenberg (1979), a relative measure of nitrophily. The plants were cultivated in a growth cabinet at five levels of ammonium-nitrate supply. At low N-supply, the relative growth rate (RGR) was independent of nitrophily. At high N-supply, RGR tended to be higher in nitrophilic than in non-nitrophilic species. However, the response of RGR to N-supply was strongly and positively correlated with the nitrophily of species. Increasing N-supply enhanced partitioning to leaf weight per total biomass (LWR) and increased plant leaf area per total biomass (LAR). Specific leaf weight (SLW) and LWR were both higher in non-nitrophilic than in nitrophilic species at all levels of N-nutrition. NAR (growth per leaf area or net assimilation rate) increased with nitrophily only under conditions of high N-supply. RGR correlated positively with LAR, irrespective of N-nutrition. Under conditions of high N-supply RGR correlated with SLW negatively and with NAR positively.
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  • 16
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Boreal forest ; Nitrogen, phosphorus, and cation nutrition ; Stable isotopes ; Picea glauca Calamagrostis Vaccinium
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract Natural abundances of nitrogen isotopes, δ15N, indicate that, in the same habitat, Alaskan Picea glauca and P. mariana use a different soil nitrogen compartment from the evergreen shrub Vaccinium vitis-idaea or the deciduous grass Calamagrostis canadensis. The very low δ15N values (-7.7 ‰) suggest that (1) Picea mainly uses inorganic nitrogen (probably mainly ammonium) or organic N in fresh litter, (2) Vaccinium (-4.3 ‰) with its ericoid mycorrhizae uses more stable organic matter, and (3) Calamagrostis (+0.9 ‰) exploits deeper soil horizons with higher δ15N values of soil N. We conclude that species limited by the same nutrient may coexist by drawing on different pools of soil N in a nutrient-deficient environment. The differences among life-forms decrease with increasing N availability. The different levels of δ15N are associated with different nitrogen concentrations in leaves, Picea having a lower N concentration (0.62 mmol g−1) than Vaccinium (0.98 mmol g−1) or Calamagrostis (1.33 mmol g−1). An extended vector analysis by Timmer and Armstrong (1987) suggests that N is the most limiting element for Picea in this habitat, causing needle yellowing at N concentrations below 0.5 mmol g−1 or N contents below 2 mmol needle−1. Increasing N supply had an exponential effect on twig and needle growth. Phosphorus, potassium and magnesium are at marginal supply, but no interaction between ammonium supply and needle Mg concentration could be detected. Calcium is in adequate supply on both calcareous and acidic soils. The results are compared with European conditions of excessive N supply from anthropogenic N depositions.
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  • 17
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Air pollution ; Acid rain ; Photosynthesis ; Nutrition ; Picea abies
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary Photosynthetic rates and nutrient contents of spruce needles were measured in a region with high levels of air pollution in NE Bavaria, Germany (FRG), and compared to spruce grown under clean air conditions at Craigieburn, in the South Island of New Zealand (NZ). The absolute rates of CO2 uptake, the slope of the CO2 response curve at 240 μl l−1 internal CO2 concentration, and the change of photosynthetic rates with needle age at ambient and saturated CO2 concentrations were virtually identical at both measuring sites. These results confirm an earlier conclusion, that there is no long-term effect of atmospheric pollutants directly on photosynthetic CO2 uptake rates with persistent exposure at the FRG site to high levels of anthropogenic air pollution. Photosynthetic capacity at saturating CO2 concentration was three times higher in the NZ spruce. Needles with high photosynthetic capacity in NZ had lower nitrogen and higher calcium concentrations per unit dry weight but higher concentrations of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and calcium per unit leaf area, and twice the specific leaf weight.
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  • 18
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: δ13C ; δ15N ; Nitrogen assimilation ; Forest decline ; Picea abies ; Stable isotopes
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary Natural carbon and nitrogen isotope ratios were measured in different compartments (needles and twigs of different ages and crown positions, litter, understorey vegetation, roots and soils of different horizons) on 5 plots of a healthy and on 8 plots of a declining Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) forest in the Fichtelgebirge (NE Bavaria, Germany), which has recently been described in detail (Oren et al. 1988a; Schulze et al. 1989). The δ13C values of needles did not differ between sites or change consistently with needle age, but did decrease from the sun-to the shade-crown. This result confirms earlier conclusions from gas exchange measurements that gaseous air pollutants did no long-lasting damage in an area where such damage was expected. Twigs (δ13C between-25.3 and-27.8‰) were significantly less depleted in 13C than needles (δ13C between-27.3 and-29.1‰), and δ13C in twigs increased consistently with age. The δ15N values of needles ranged between-2.5 and-4.1‰ and varied according to stand and age. In young needles δ15N decreased with needle age, but remained constant or increased in needles that were 2 or 3 years old. Needles from the healthy site were more depleted in 15N than those from the declining site. The difference between sites was greater in old needles than in young ones. This differentiation presumably reflects an earlier onset of nitrogen reallocation in needles of the declining stand. δ15N values in twigs were more negative than in needles (-3.5 to-5.2‰) and showed age- and stand-dependent trends that were similar to the needles. δ15N values of roots and soil samples increased at both stands with soil depth from-3.5 in the organic layer to +4‰ in the mineral soil. The δ15N values of roots from the mineral soil were different from those of twigs and needles. Roots from the shallower organic layer had values similar to twigs and needles. Thus, the bulk of the assimilated nitrogen was presumably taken up by the roots from the organic layer. The problem of separation of ammonium or nitrate use by roots from different soil horizons is discussed.
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  • 19
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Nitrogen isotope ratio ; Nutrition ; Insectivorous plants ; Drosera
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary Plants of Drosera species, neighbouring noncarnivorous plants, and arthropods on or near each Drosera sp. were collected at 11 contrasting habitat locations in SW Australia. At three of the sites clones of the rare glandless mutant form of D. erythrorhiza were collected alongside fully glandular counterparts. The δ 15N value (15N/14N natural isotope composition) of insect-free leaf and stem fractions was measured, and the data then used to estimate proportional dependence on insect N (%NdI) for the respective species and growth forms of Drosera. The data indicated lower %NdI values for rosette than for self-supporting erect or for climbing vine species. The latter two groups showed an average %NdI value close to 50%. The %NdI increased with length and biomass of climbing but not erect forms of Drosera. δ 15N values of stems were positively correlated with corresponding values for leaves of Drosera. Leaf material was on average significantly more 15N enriched than stems, possibly due to delayed transport of recent insect-derived N, or to discrimination against 15N in transfer from leaf to the rest of the plant. The comparison of δ 15N values of insects and arthropod prey, glandless and glandular plants of D. erythrorhiza indicated %NdI values of 14.3, 12.2 and 32.2 at the respective sites, while matching comparisons based on δ 15N of insect, reference plants and glandular plants proved less definitive, with only one site recording a positive %NdI (value of 10.4%) despite evidence at all sites of feeding on insects by the glandular plants. The use of the δ 15N technique for studying nutrition of carnivorous species and the ecological significance of insect feeding of different growth forms of Drosera growing in a large range of habitats is discussed.
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  • 20
    ISSN: 1432-1939
    Keywords: Nitrogen fixation ; Carbon isotope ratio ; Nitrogen isotope ratio ; Acacia ; Namibia
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary Nitrogen (N2) fixation was estimated along an aridity gradient in Namibia from the natural abundance of 15N (δ15N value) in 11 woody species of the Mimosacease which were compared with the δ15N values in 11 woody non-Mimosaceae. Averaging all species and habitats the calculated contribution of N2 fixation (N f ) to leaf nitrogen (N) concentration of Mimosaceae averaged about 30%, with large variation between and within species. While in Acacia albida N f was only 2%, it was 49% in Acacia hereroensis and Dichrostachys cinerea, and reached 71% in Acacia melifera. In the majority of species N f was 10–30%. There was a marked variation in background δ15N values along the aridity gradient, with the highest δ15N values in the lowland savanna. The difference between δ15N values of Mimosaceae and non-Mimosaceae, which is assumed to result mainly from N2 fixation, was also largest in the lowland savanna. Variations in δ15N of Mimosaceae did not affect N concentrations, but higher δ15N-values of Mimosaeae are associated with lower carbon isotope ratios (δ13C value). N2 fixation was associated with reduced intrinsic water use efficiency. The opposite trends were found in non-Mimosaceae, in which N-concentration increased with δ15N, but δ13C was unaffected. The large variation among species and sites is discussed.
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