, Volume 187, Issue 4, pp 505–510 | Cite as

Kinetics of wound-induced hydraulic signals and variation potentials in wheat seedlings

  • M. Malone


Displacement transducers were used to demonstrate that localised wounding causes a rapid and systemic increase in leaf thickness in seedlings of wheat (Triticum durum Desf. cv. Iva). These increases are interpreted as reflecting wound-induced hydraulic signals. The duration of the wound-induced increase was found to be about 1 h or more, and it was shown that repeated wounds could induce repeated responses. The increase occurred even when plants had no access to an external water supply. Change in leaf thickness was shown closely to reflect change in leaf water potential. The velocity and kinetics of the wound-induced hydraulic signal were measured using multiple transducers ranged along a single leaf. The front of the signal was shown to travel through the plant at rates of at least 10 cm · s−1. Development of the increase in leaf thickness was found to be relatively faster furthest from the wound. Onset of the change in leaf thickness in leaves remote from the wound was shown to precede onset of changes in surface electrical potential (variation potential) which are also induced by wounding. In contrast to reports from other species, variation potentials in wheat were here shown to spread extremely rapidly, at rates similar to that of the hydraulic signal. These data support the view that wound-induced hydraulic signals are the trigger for variation potentials in wheat.

Key words

Hydraulic signal Triticum (wound, signal) Wound response Water potential 



water potential


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Malone
    • 1
  1. 1.HRI WellesbourneWarwicksUK

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