, Volume 23, Issue 5, pp 1003–1011 | Cite as

Evidence for the signaling role of methyl jasmonate, methyl salicylate and benzothiazole between poplar (Populus simonii × P. pyramidalis ‘Opera 8277’) cuttings

  • Zenghui Hu
  • Yingbai Shen
  • Fanyi Shen
  • Youqing Luo
  • Xiaohua Su
Original Paper


Interplant communication has been widely demonstrated in plants, especially in herbaceous plants. In this study, mechanical damage was shown to affect the levels of pyrochatechol, chlorogenic acid, gallic acid and p-hydroxyl benzoic acid in poplar (Populus simonii × P. pyramidalis ‘Opera 8277’) cuttings, indicating the activation of defense response. In neighboring intact cuttings, the levels of those phenolics also varied when compared to the control, suggesting the interplant communication between poplar cuttings. Three volatiles, methyl jasmonate, methyl salicylate and benzothiazole, were detected in volatiles emitted from mechanically damaged poplar cuttings. All of them can induce changes in the levels of four phenolics. Therefore, they could act as airborne signals between P. simonii × P. pyramidalis ‘Opera 8277’ cuttings. The different change patterns of phenolic contents induced by different volatiles imply that the defense response activated in neighboring plants may be regulated by multiple signaling pathways. The results also suggest that the entire defense response of plants involves a variety of airborne signals in wound-induced volatiles.


Airborne signals Defense response Interplant communication Phenolics Populus simonii × P. pyramidalis ‘Opera 8277’ cuttings 



We thank Prof Hongbo Gao and Dr. G. Hazenberg for valuable suggestions on the manuscript. This work was collectively supported by the Programme for Changjiang Scholars and the Innovative Research Team in Universities of China (PCSIRT0607), by the Key Science Programme of the State Forestry Administration of China (2006-59) and the National Key Project of Scientific and Technical Supporting Programmes Funded by the Ministry of Science & Technology of China (2006BAD01A15; 2006BAD24B04).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zenghui Hu
    • 1
  • Yingbai Shen
    • 1
  • Fanyi Shen
    • 2
  • Youqing Luo
    • 3
  • Xiaohua Su
    • 4
  1. 1.Key Laboratory for Genetics and Breeding of Forest Trees and Ornamental Plants, College of Biological Sciences and TechnologyBeijing Forestry UniversityBeijingChina
  2. 2.College of SciencesBeijing Forestry UniversityBeijingChina
  3. 3.Key Laboratory for Forest Silviculture and Conservation, College of Forest ScienceBeijing Forestry UniversityBeijingChina
  4. 4.Research Institute of ForestryChinese Academy of ForestryBeijingChina

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