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Oecologia

, Volume 88, Issue 4, pp 597–604 | Cite as

Reduced photoinhibition with stem curling in the resurrection plant Selaginella lepidophylla

  • Jefferson G. Lebkuecher
  • William G. Eickmeier
Original Papers

Summary

Selaginella lepidophylla, the resurrection plant, curls dramatically during desiccation and the hypothesis that curling may help limit bright light-induced damage during desiccation and rehydration was tested under laboratory conditions. Restraint of curling during desiccation at 25° C and a constant irradiance of 2000 μmol m−2 s]t-1 significantly decreased PSII and whole-chain electron transport and the Fv/Fm fluorescence yield ratio following rehydration relative to unrestrained plants. Normal curling during desiccation at 37.5°C and 200 μmol m−2 s−1 irradiance did not fully protect against photoinhibition or chlorophyll photooxidation indicating that some light-induced damage occurred early in the desiccation process before substantial curling. Photosystem I electron transport was less inhibited by high-temperature, high-irradiance desiccation than either PSII or whole-chain electron transport and PSI was not significantly affected by restraint of curling during desiccation at 25°C and high irradiance. Previous curling also helped prevent photoinhibition of PSII electron transport and loss of whole-plant photosynthetic capacity as the plants uncurled during rehydration at high light. These results demonstrate that high-temperature desiccation exacerbated photoinhibition, PSI was less photoinhibited than PSII or whole-chain electron transport, and stem curling ameliorated bright light-induced damage helping to make rapid recovery of photosynthetic competence possible when the plants are next wetted.

Key words

Desiccation Photoinhibition Photooxidation Selaginella lepidophylla 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jefferson G. Lebkuecher
    • 1
  • William G. Eickmeier
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiologyVanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA

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