Response of Photosynthesis to High Light and Drought for Arabidopsis thaliana Grown Under a UV-B Enhanced Light Regime

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Arabidopsis thaliana grown in a light regime that included ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation (6 kJ m−2 d−1) had similar light-saturated photosynthetic rates but up to 50% lower stomatal conductance rates, as compared to plants grown without UV-B radiation. Growth responses of Arabidopsis to UV-B radiation included lower leaf area (25%) and biomass (10%) and higher UV-B absorbing compounds (30%) and chlorophyll content (52%). Lower stomatal conductance rates for plants grown with UV-B radiation were, in part, due to lower stomatal density on the adaxial surface. Plants grown with UV-B radiation had more capacity to down regulate photochemical efficiency of photosystem II (PSII) as shown by up to 25% lower φPSII and 30% higher non-photochemical quenching of chlorophyll fluorescence under saturating light. These contributed to a smaller reduction in the maximum photochemical efficiency of PSII (Fv/Fm), greater dark-recovery of Fv/Fm, and higher light-saturated carbon assimilation and stomatal conductance and transpiration rates after a four-hour high light treatment for plants grown with UV-B radiation. Plants grown with UV-B were more tolerant to a 12 day drought treatment than plants grown without UV-B as indicated by two times higher photosynthetic rates and 12% higher relative water content. UV-B-grown plants also had three times higher proline content. Higher tolerance to drought stress for Arabidopsis plants grown under UV-B radiation may be attributed to both increased proline content and decreased stomatal conductance. Growth of Arabidopsis in a UV-B-enhanced light regime increased tolerance to high light exposure and drought stress.


This article was originally published in Photosynthesis Research. The full-text article from the publisher can be found here.

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Photosynthesis Research


© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006