A copper-deficiency-induced root reductase is different from the iron-deficiency-induced one in red clover (Trifolium pratense L.)
There is increasing evidence that Cu deficiency can induce root reductase activity, but the ecological and physiological significance of this is unknown. This study compared the characteristics of root reductase activity induced by Cu deficiency with those induced by Fe deficiency in red clover (Trifolium pratenseL. cv. Kenland), a Fe-efficient plant. Effects of other nutritional stresses were also investigated for comparison. Compared with the effect of Fe deficiency, Cu deficiency induced only a moderate level of root reductase activity, while other nutrient stresses had no effect, or even inhibited the root reductases activity, especially in the case of Zn deficiency. Compared with Fe deficiency-induced Fe(III)-chelate reductase, Cu deficiency-induced reductase displayed a different pattern of induction. The activity of the Cu deficiency-induced reductase in intact plants increased with time; in decapitated plants it showed a distinct peak at a later stage of the treatment. The Fe concentration in the roots was significantly increased under Cu deficiency. Furthermore, the reductase activity was presented in the entire root system, contrary to what was observed for the Fe-deficiency-induced reductase activity, which was confined to the root apex. Cu deficiency did not increase proton extrusion from the roots, even when growth was significantly affected. The present results suggest that in red clover Cu deficiency induces a root reductase that is different from the reductase induced by Fe deficiency.
KeywordsCu deficiency iron deficiency reductase activity root zones
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