Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Tree Physiol. 2002 Dec;22(17):1257-63.

Effects of long-term, elevated ultraviolet-B radiation on phytochemicals in the bark of silver birch (Betula pendula).

Author information

  • 1Department of Biology, Natural Product Research Laboratories, University of Joensuu, PO Box 111, 80101 Joensuu, Finland.


Long-term outdoor experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of elevated ultraviolet-B (UV-B, 280-320 nm) radiation on secondary metabolites (phenolics and terpenoids) and the main soluble sugars (sucrose, raffinose and glucose) in the bark of silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) saplings. Saplings were exposed to a constant 50% increase in erythemal UV irradiance (UV-B(CIE); based on the CIE (International Commission on Illumination) erythemal action spectrum) and a small increase in UV-A radiation (320-400 nm) for three growing seasons in an irradiation field in central Finland. Two control groups were used: saplings exposed to ambient radiation and saplings exposed to slightly increased UV-A radiation. Concentrations of sucrose, raffinose and glucose in bark were higher in UV-treated saplings than in saplings grown in ambient radiation, indicating that stem carbohydrate metabolism was changed by long-term elevated UV radiation. Saplings in the elevated UV-A + UV-B radiation treatment and the UV-A radiation control treatment had significantly increased concentrations of certain UV-absorbing phenolics, such as salidroside, 3,4'-dihydroxypropiophenone-3-glucoside, (+)-catechin and (-)-epicatechin compared with saplings in ambient radiation. In contrast, the radiation treatments had no effect on the non-UV-B-absorbing terpenoids, papyriferic acid and deacetylpapyriferic acid. We conclude that plant parts, in addition to leaves, accumulate specific phenolic UV-filters in response to UV radiation exposure.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Support Center