The xylemis a complex systemthat includes a network of dead conduits ensuring long-distance water transport in plants. Under ongoing climate changes, xylem embolism is a major and recurrent cause of drought-induced tree mortality. Non-structural carbohydrates (NSC) play key roles in plant responses to drought and frost stress, and several studies putatively suggest their involvement in the regulation of xylem water transport. However, a clear picture on the roles of NSCs in plant hydraulics has not been drawn to date. We summarize the current knowledge on the involvement of NSCs during embolism formation and subsequent hydraulic recovery. Under drought, sugars are generally accumulated in xylem parenchyma and in xylem sap. At drought-relief, xylem functionality is putatively restored in an osmotically driven process involving wood parenchyma, xylem sap and phloem compartments. By analyzing the published data on stem hydraulics and NSC contents under drought/frost stress and subsequent stress relief, we found that embolism build-up positively correlated to stem NSC depletion, and that the magnitude of post-stress hydraulic recovery positively correlated to consumption of soluble sugars. These findings suggest a close relationship between hydraulics and carbohydrate dynamics. We call for more experiments on hydraulic and NSC dynamics in controlled and field conditions.

The Possible Role of Non-Structural Carbohydrates in the Regulation of Tree Hydraulics

Petrussa E.
Secondo
;
Petruzzellis F.;Casolo V.
Ultimo
2020

Abstract

The xylemis a complex systemthat includes a network of dead conduits ensuring long-distance water transport in plants. Under ongoing climate changes, xylem embolism is a major and recurrent cause of drought-induced tree mortality. Non-structural carbohydrates (NSC) play key roles in plant responses to drought and frost stress, and several studies putatively suggest their involvement in the regulation of xylem water transport. However, a clear picture on the roles of NSCs in plant hydraulics has not been drawn to date. We summarize the current knowledge on the involvement of NSCs during embolism formation and subsequent hydraulic recovery. Under drought, sugars are generally accumulated in xylem parenchyma and in xylem sap. At drought-relief, xylem functionality is putatively restored in an osmotically driven process involving wood parenchyma, xylem sap and phloem compartments. By analyzing the published data on stem hydraulics and NSC contents under drought/frost stress and subsequent stress relief, we found that embolism build-up positively correlated to stem NSC depletion, and that the magnitude of post-stress hydraulic recovery positively correlated to consumption of soluble sugars. These findings suggest a close relationship between hydraulics and carbohydrate dynamics. We call for more experiments on hydraulic and NSC dynamics in controlled and field conditions.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11390/1173734
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