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Effects of nitrogen and phosphorus imbalance on photosynthetic traits of poplar Oxford clone under ozone pollution

Abstract

Ozone (O3) pollution and the availability of nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) in the soil both affect plant photosynthesis and chlorophyll (Chl) content, but the interaction of O3 and nutrition is unclear. We postulated that the nutritional condition changes plant photosynthetic responses to O3. An O3-sensitive poplar clone (Oxford) was subject to two N levels (N0, 0 kg N ha− 1; N80, 80 kg N ha− 1), two P levels (P0, 0 kg P ha− 1; P80, 80 kg P ha− 1) and three levels of O3 exposure (ambient concentration, AA; 1.5 × AA; 2.0 × AA) over a growing season in an O3 free air controlled exposure (FACE) facility. The daily change of leaf gas exchange and dark respiration (Rd) were investigated at mid-summer (August). Chl a fluorescence was measured three times in July, August and September. At the end of the growing season, Chl content was measured. It was found that Chl content, the maximum quantum yield (Fv/Fm), Chl a fluorescence performance index (PI) and gas exchange were negatively affected by elevated O3. Phosphorus may mitigate the O3-induced reduction of the ratio of photosynthesis to stomatal conductance, while it exacerbated the O3-induced loss of Fv/Fm. Nitrogen alleviated negative effects of O3 on Fv/Fm and PI in July. Ozone-induced loss of net photosynthetic rate was mitigated by N in medium O3 exposure (1.5 × AA). However, such a mitigation effect was not observed in the higher O3 level (2.0 × AA). Nitrogen addition exacerbated O3-induced increase of Rd suggesting an increased respiratory carbon loss in the presence of O3 and N. This may result in a further reduction of the net carbon gain for poplars exposed to O3.

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Acknowledgements

This work was financially supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (31711530648), University Nursing Program for Young Scholar With Creative Talents in Heilongjiang Province (UNPYSCT-2017023), the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze (2013/7956) and the LIFE15 ENV/IT/000183 project MOTTLES. We would like to thank Alessandro Materassi, Gianni Fasano, Moreno Lazzara, Lorenzo Bussotti, and Isaac Tasap for their support during the field work. We thank Matthew Haworth for the English proofreading.

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Zhang, L., Hoshika, Y., Carrari, E. et al. Effects of nitrogen and phosphorus imbalance on photosynthetic traits of poplar Oxford clone under ozone pollution. J Plant Res 131, 915–924 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10265-018-1071-4

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Keywords

  • Chlorophyll a fluorescence
  • Nitrogen
  • Ozone
  • Phosphorus
  • Photosynthesis
  • Stomatal conductance