The effects of a high temperature (3 h, 40°C) and water deficit (45 h on 3% PEG 6000) on the pool of chlorophyllous pigments in the leaves of 4-, 7-, and 11-day-old barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) seedlings were studied. Heating resulted in a decrease in the total content of chlorophylls (Chl) (a + b) in 4-day-old plants but not in the older leaves. Water deficit induced an increase in the pigment content in young seedlings but reduced it in the leaves of 11-day-old plants. In young seedlings, hyperthermia and dehydration affected similarly Chl (a + b) degradation, leading to a marked inhibition of the chlorophyllase (Chlase) activity hydrolyzing Chl to chlorophyllides and phytol. In old leaves, an activation of this enzyme was observed. The stress factors under study affected different stages of pigment biosynthesis. High temperature inhibited the activity of dark and light stages of Chl(a + b) biosynthesis. Dehydration did not change markedly the resynthesis of protochlorophyllide, while the enzymes of the light stage of Chl biosynthesis were activated in young but inhibited in old barley leaves. The results thus obtained allowed us to conclude that heat treatment and dehydration specifically affected the Chl biosynthesis. At the same time, the Chlase response was nonspecific.
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 18, 2004
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