Photoacclimatory responses of zostera marina in the intertidal and subtidal zones

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From: PLoS ONE(Vol. 11, Issue 5)
Publisher: Public Library of Science
Document Type: Report
Length: 7,509 words
Lexile Measure: 1450L

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Abstract :

Photoacclimatory responses of the seagrass Zostera marina in the intertidal and subtidal zones were investigated by measuring chlorophyll a fluorescence parameters, photosynthetic pigments, leaf [delta].sup.13 C values, and shoot morphology in two bay systems. Intertidal plants had higher carotenoid concentrations than subtidal plants to avoid photodamage under excess light conditions during the day. The maximum relative electron transport rate (rETR.sub.max) and minimum saturation irradiance (E.sub.k) of the intertidal plants were higher than those of the subtidal plants, whereas photosynthetic efficiency ([alpha]) and maximum quantum yield (F.sub.v /F.sub.m) were higher in subtidal plants. The intertidal plants also had significantly greater Stern-Volmer non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) than that of the subtidal plants. These results suggest that the subtidal plants photoacclimated to use limited light more efficiently, and the intertidal plants exhibited photosynthetic responses to minimize photodamage at excess irradiance. The [delta].sup.13 C values of leaf tissues were more negative in the intertidal plants than those in the subtidal plants, suggesting that the intertidal plants used atmospheric or dissolved CO.sub.2 for photosynthesis during emersion. Effective quantum yield ([DELTA]F/F.sub.m ') in the intertidal plants decreased more slowly after emersion than that in the subtidal plants, indicating higher desiccation tolerance of the intertidal plants. The intertidal plants also recovered more rapidly from desiccation damage than the subtidal plants, suggesting photosynthetic adaptation to desiccation stress. The photosynthetic plasticity of Z. marina in response to variable environmental conditions most likely allows this species to occur in the intertidal and subtidal zones.

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A453533534