Root activities in terms of respiration and non-structural carbohydrates (NSC) storage and mobilization have been suggested as major physiological roles in fine root lifespan. As more frequent heat waves and drought periods within the next decades are expected, to what extent does thermal acclimation in fine roots represent amechanism to cope with such upcoming climatic conditions? In this study, the possible changes in very fine (diameter<0.5 mm) and fine (0.5–1 mm) root morphology and physiology in terms of respiration rate and NSC [soluble sugars (SS) and starch] concentrations, were investigated on 2-year-old Fagus sylvatica saplings subjected to a simulated long-lasting heat wave event and to co-occurring soil drying. For both very fine and fine roots, soil temperature (ST) resulted inversely correlated with specific root length, respiration rates and SSs concentration, but directly correlated with root mass, root tissue density and starch concentration. In particular, starch concentration increased under 28∘C for successively decreasing under 21∘C ST. These findings showed that thermal acclimation in very fine and fine roots due to 24 days exposure to high ST (∼28∘C), induced starch accumulation. Such ‘carbon-savings strategy’ should bear the maintenance costs associated to the recovery process in case of restored favorable environmental conditions, such as those occurring at the end of a heat wave event. Drought condition seems to affect the fine root vitality much more under moderate than high temperature condition, making the temporary exposure to high ST less threatening to root vitality than expected.

Acclimation of fine root respiration to soil warming involves starch deposition in very fine and fine roots: A case study in Fagus sylvatica saplings

DI IORIO, ANTONINO;CHIATANTE, DONATO
2016-01-01

Abstract

Root activities in terms of respiration and non-structural carbohydrates (NSC) storage and mobilization have been suggested as major physiological roles in fine root lifespan. As more frequent heat waves and drought periods within the next decades are expected, to what extent does thermal acclimation in fine roots represent amechanism to cope with such upcoming climatic conditions? In this study, the possible changes in very fine (diameter<0.5 mm) and fine (0.5–1 mm) root morphology and physiology in terms of respiration rate and NSC [soluble sugars (SS) and starch] concentrations, were investigated on 2-year-old Fagus sylvatica saplings subjected to a simulated long-lasting heat wave event and to co-occurring soil drying. For both very fine and fine roots, soil temperature (ST) resulted inversely correlated with specific root length, respiration rates and SSs concentration, but directly correlated with root mass, root tissue density and starch concentration. In particular, starch concentration increased under 28∘C for successively decreasing under 21∘C ST. These findings showed that thermal acclimation in very fine and fine roots due to 24 days exposure to high ST (∼28∘C), induced starch accumulation. Such ‘carbon-savings strategy’ should bear the maintenance costs associated to the recovery process in case of restored favorable environmental conditions, such as those occurring at the end of a heat wave event. Drought condition seems to affect the fine root vitality much more under moderate than high temperature condition, making the temporary exposure to high ST less threatening to root vitality than expected.
Plant Science; Cell Biology; Genetics; Physiology
DI IORIO, Antonino; Giacomuzzi, Valentino; Chiatante, Donato
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11383/2025025
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