ISSN 10214437, Russian Journal of Plant Physiology, 2015, Vol. 62, No. 2, pp. 229–236. © Pleiades Publishing, Ltd., 2015.
The Tarim River and the Heihe River are two most
important and largest inland rivers in Western China.
Their downstream areas are known as a green corridor
covered with lush riparian forests several miles wide.
World’s 54% area of
spread in this basin  and mainly distributed on river
banks or areas with deep water tables . Salinity is
one of the major abiotic stresses limiting plant growth
and productivity, particularly in arid land. Researchers
showed that salinity caused several anatomical and
physiological modifications in plants viz. changes in
tracheary element density, lumen area, vessels diame
ter [3–5], stomatal density, shape, and size , plant
growth and activities of antioxidant enzymes [7–9].
The effect of abiotic stress on hydraulic traits in ripar
ian plants is highly correlated with plant anatomy viz.
fibers, pith membrane [10, 11]. Vessels of halophytic
trees are more numerous and narrower than those in
Plants protect themselves from ROSinduced oxi
dative damage through both enzymatic and nonenzy
matic defense mechanisms , including the activa
This text was submitted by the authors in English.
tion of antioxidant enzymes, such as superoxide dis
mutase (SOD) and peroxidase (POD) [7–9]. The
degree of oxidative stress experienced by the cell is
determined by the levels of superoxide, H
hydroxyl radicals generated. The antioxidant activities
are crucial for suppressing toxic ROS levels within
cells . SOD and POD have been considered as two
key enzymes in ROS elimination . The estimation
of antioxidants is necessary to know the adaptability of
under salinity stress conditions.
Plants adjust their xylem hydraulic traits under var
ious stress conditions through developing more resis
tant xylem to droughtinduced cavitation , reduc
ing root hydraulic conductance , maintaining the
high hydraulic efficiency in stems and roots , and
also by increasing whole plant leaf specific conductiv
ity  and changes in the xylem sap. Hydraulic con
ductivity and embolism are the important factors con
straining plant survival and its productivity. These fac
tors are correlated with the xylem structure and
Various studies have been made to understand the
variations in xylem anatomical structures and hydraulic
functions at the interspecific, intraspecific and intra
plant level . According to Zwieniecki et al. , the
ionic content of the xylem sap has a significant effect on
the hydraulic conductivity of plants. The hydraulic
Effects of High Salinity on Physiological and Anatomical Indices
in the Early Stages of
V. D. Rajput
, Y. Chen
, and M. Ayup
State Key Laboratory of Desert and Oasis Ecology, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences,
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
Received June 3, 2014
—The effects of salinity stress on stomatal aperture and density, xylem vessels, the activities of anti
oxidant enzymes, such as superoxide dismutase (SOD) and peroxidase (POD), and xylem embolism
(PLC values) in
in the arid ecosystem of China. Pot experiment was conducted at different
concentrations of salt (50, 100, 150, and 200 mM NaCl) contained in the irrigation water used for 3 months
The POD activity increased with the increase in the severity of NaCl stress, but SOD activity was varied at
different levels of salt. Results indicated that salt treatment reduced stomatal aperture and leaf photosynthetic
capacity. However, the significant reduction in the stomatal area, in the length of stomata openings and an
increase in stomata density were noticed. Salinity stress affected water transport, which reduced native
PLC value, whereas xylem vessel area was also decreased. Presented results open the possibility of genetic
improvement for selecting the high salttolerant of
spp.to reclaim salinized lands.
Keywords: Populus euphratica
, PLC value, salinity, POD, SOD, xylem anatomy
: POD—peroxidase; SOD—superoxide dismutase.