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Chloride regulates leaf cell size and water relations in tobacco plants.


ABSTRACT: Chloride (Cl(-)) is a micronutrient that accumulates to macronutrient levels since it is normally available in nature and actively taken up by higher plants. Besides a role as an unspecific cell osmoticum, no clear biological roles have been explicitly associated with Cl(-) when accumulated to macronutrient concentrations. To address this question, the glycophyte tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L. var. Habana) has been treated with a basal nutrient solution supplemented with one of three salt combinations containing the same cationic balance: Cl(-)-based (CL), nitrate-based (N), and sulphate+phosphate-based (SP) treatments. Under non-saline conditions (up to 5 mM Cl(-)) and no water limitation, Cl(-) specifically stimulated higher leaf cell size and led to a moderate increase of plant fresh and dry biomass mainly due to higher shoot expansion. When applied in the 1-5 mM range, Cl(-) played specific roles in regulating leaf osmotic potential and turgor, allowing plants to improve leaf water balance parameters. In addition, Cl(-) also altered water relations at the whole-plant level through reduction of plant transpiration. This was a consequence of a lower stomatal conductance, which resulted in lower water loss and greater photosynthetic and integrated water-use efficiency. In contrast to Cl(-), these effects were not observed for essential anionic macronutrients such as nitrate, sulphate, and phosphate. We propose that the abundant uptake and accumulation of Cl(-) responds to adaptive functions improving water homeostasis in higher plants.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC4737079 | BioStudies | 2016-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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