In barley seedlings (Hordeum vulgare L.) during two days after irradiation of shoots with UV-B (0.5 W/m2, 6 h), the rate of elongation of primary roots decreased 2–3 times compared to that in control plants. The modulus of elasticity of roots (ε) increased at most twofold in 12 h after the onset of irradiation; the hydraulic conductivity (L p) diminished by a factor of two in 12 h, and the root osmotic pressure gradually decreased by 0.08 MPa in 24 h. Changes in ε and L p were shown to be related to oxidative stress in growing roots, which was evidenced from the increase in H2O2 level up to 15-fold increase in 6 h and in activity of guaiacol peroxidase (3.5-fold in 12 h). After 48 h, the characteristics of oxidative metabolism and root characteristics ε and L p became identical in untreated and treated plants. On the third day, the rate of root growth in treated plants reached its initial value. It is concluded that the main causes of retardation of root growth under these conditions were as follows: the increase in cell wall rigidity related to formation of oxidative cross-links in the apoplast and the decrease in root osmotic pressure due to limited transport of assimilates from irradiated leaves. After the intensity of UV-B irradiation applied to shoots was enhanced (1.6 W/m2, 4 h), another physiological status of roots was observed on the 2nd day characterized by twofold increase in L p, tenfold decreased root elongation rate, and by a progressing increase of root diameter in growing roots. The comparison of root responses induced by irradiation of shoots with the root responses to sodium salicylate and ABA suggests that both agents might participate in the transmission of signals from irradiated leaves to roots.
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 24, 2006
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