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Environ Pollut. 2009 May;157(5):1461-9. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2008.09.029. Epub 2008 Oct 26.

Detoxification and repair process of ozone injury: from O3 uptake to gene expression adjustment.

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  • 1Department of Agricultural Chemistry and Biotechnology, University of Pisa, Via del Borghetto 80, 56124 Pisa, Italy.


Plants react to O(3) threat by setting up a variety of defensive strategies involving the co-ordinated modulation of stress perception, signalling and metabolic responses. Although stomata largely controls O(3) uptake, differences in O(3) tolerance cannot always be ascribed to changes in stomatal conductance but cell protective and repair processes should be taken into account. O(3)-driven ROS production in the apoplast induces a secondary, active, self-propagating generation of ROS, whose levels must be finely tuned, by many enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidant systems, to induce gene activation without determining uncontrolled cell death. Additional signalling molecules, as ethylene, jasmonic and salicylic acid are also crucial to determine the spreading and the containment of leaf lesions. The main recent results obtained on O(3) sensing, signal transduction, ROS formation and detoxification mechanisms are here discussed.

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