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Planta. 2007 Aug;226(3):671-81. Epub 2007 Apr 20.

Aquaporin expression in response to different water stress intensities and recovery in Richter-110 (Vitis sp.): relationship with ecophysiological status.

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  • 1Grup de Recerca en Biologia de les Plantes en Condicions Mediterrànies, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Carretera de Valldemossa Km 7.5, 07122 Palma de Mallorca, Spain.


Aquaporins seem essential for the regulation of plant water status and expenses. Richter-110 is a Vitis hybrid (Vitis berlandieri x rupestris) reputed to be strongly drought-tolerant. Three irrigation treatments were established in Richter-110 plants growing outdoors defined by the resulting maximum stomatal conductance (g (s)), and ensuring water stress situations not severe enough as to stop photosynthesis and growth: well-watered plants (g (s) about 250 mmol H(2)O m(-2) s(-1)), moderate water stress (g (s) about 150 mmol H(2)O m(-2) s(-1)) and severe water stress (g (s) about 50 mmol H(2)O m(-2) s(-1)). Plants under water stress were kept at constant water availability for 7 days to check for possible acclimation. Finally, plants were re-watered, and allowed to recover, for 3 days. Stomatal conductance, leaf water potential, xylem abscisic acid (ABA) content and root and stem hydraulic conductivity were determined. The relative amounts of expression of mRNA encoding seven putative aquaporins were determined in roots and leaves by RT-PCR. The decrease in stomatal conductance with moderate and severe water stress was associated with increasing ABA contents, but not with the leaf water potential and hydraulic conductivities, which remained unchanged during the entire experiment. Aquaporin gene expression varied depending on which aquaporin, water stress level and the plant organ. We suggest that aquaporin expression was responsive to water stress as part of the homeostasis, which resulted in constant leaf water potential and hydraulic conductivity.

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