Seasonal changes in the content of photosynthetic pigments and their ratio were studied in perennial gramineous (Psathyrostachys juncea Tzvel., Elymus sibiricus L., Bromopsis inermis Leys) and equisetaceous (Equisetum variegatum Schleich. ex Web., E. scirpoides Michx.) plants grown under conditions of cryolithic zone in Central and North-East Yakutia (the Pole of Cold). Simultaneously with growth in chlorophyll (Chl) content in all the studied species of perennial grasses of Central Yakutia, a considerable increase in the content of carotenoids (Car) of the xanthophyll cycle (XC) pigments was observed with the beginning of autumn temperature fall. Similar dependence was found in horsetails of the Pole of Cold region: the content of Car was increased by 1.2–3.0 times comparing to the summer values, whereas at the same time the concentration of oxygen-containing forms increased and the ratio of Chl to xanthophylls and Car decreased. In general, horsetails had typically a lower content of Chl and Car, which was determined not only by extremely harsh climatic conditions of the region but also by specific characteristics of Equisetaceae plants. Closer to winter time, the formation of secondary Car, rhodoxanthin, was also observed in the studied horsetail species. In this case, rhodoxanthin presumably plays more important antioxidant role than XC, which can not operate at constantly low temperatures. The obtained data suggest that one of the characteristics of cold hardening of perennial grasses under conditions of cryolithic zone of Yakutia is, presumably, the high level of primary, as well as secondary, Car with most profound antioxidant properties.
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 25, 2010
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