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J Plant Res. 2014 Mar;127(2):339-45. doi: 10.1007/s10265-013-0622-y. Epub 2013 Dec 24.

Photosynthetic responses of Monarch birch seedlings to differing timings of free air ozone fumigation.

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Silviculture and Forest Ecological Studies, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Hokkaido, 060-8589, Japan.


To study the effects of different periods of ozone (O3) fumigation on photosynthesis in leaves of the Monarch birch (Betula maximowicziana), we undertook free air O3 fumigation to Monarch birch seedlings at a concentration of 60 nmol mol(-1) during daytime. Plants were exposed to O3 at early, late or both periods in the growing season. The light-saturated net photosynthetic rate (A(sat)) in July and August was reduced by O3 exposure through a reduction in the maximum rate of carboxylation (V(c,max)). In early September, on the other hand, despite a reduction in V(c,max), A(sat) was not reduced by O3 due to a counteracting increase in the stomatal conductance. Through the experiment, there was no difference in sensitivity to O3 between maturing and matured leaves. We analyzed the relationship between A(sat), V(c,max) and accumulated stomatal O3 flux (AF(st)). Whereas V(c,max) decreased with increasing AF(st), the correlation between A(sat) and AF(st) was weak because the response of stomatal conductance to O3 was affected by season. We conclude photosynthetic response of Monarch birch to O3 exposure changes with season. This is due to the inconstant stomatal response to O3 but not due to the respose of biochemical assimilation capacity in chloroplasts.

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