Journal of Arid Land

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 441–456 | Cite as

Effect of water deficiency on relationships between metabolism, physiology, biomass, and yield of upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.)

  • Tohir A. Bozorov
  • Rustam M. Usmanov
  • Honglan Yang
  • Shukhrat A. Hamdullaev
  • Sardorbek Musayev
  • Jaloliddin Shavkiev
  • Saidgani Nabiev
  • Daoyuan Zhang
  • Alisher A. Abdullaev


Drought is a common abiotic stress that considerably limits crop production. The objective of this study is to explore the influence of water deficiency on the yield, physiologic and metabolomic attributes in upland cotton cultivars (Gossypium hirsutum L). Cotton cultivars, 'Ishonch' and 'Tashkent-6' were selected to study the relationships among their physiologic, metabolomic and yield attributes during water deficiency. Deficit irrigation was designed by modifying the traditional watering protocol to reduce water use. Results indicate that cotton cultivars respond differently to water deficit stress. Water deficit significantly influenced plant height, the number of internodes, and sympodial branches in both cultivars. However, yield components such as the number of bolls, boll seed, lint mass, and individual plant yield were significantly reduced only in 'Tashkent-6'. The leaf area decreased and the specific leaf weight increased in 'Ishonch' under deficit irrigation conditions. However, 'Tashkent-6' demonstrated significant water loss compared to 'Ishonch', and both cultivars showed reduced transpiration rates. Untargeted metabolite profiles of leaves showed clear separation in 'Ishonch', but not in 'Tashkent-6' under deficit irrigation compared to full irrigation. The individual metabolites such as proline and galactinol showed strong association with yield under water deficit stress. Moreover, this study indicates that leaf area and transpiration intensity influence yield during water deficiency. In summary, the correlation among morpho-physiologic, metabolic, and yield components significantly varied between the two cultivars under water deficiency. The flowering stage was sensitive to water stress for both cultivars. The direct relationship between physiology, metabolism, and yield may be a useful selection criterion for determining candidate parents for cotton drought tolerance breeding.


irrigation cotton drought tolerance metabolite profiling yield 


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This work is supported by Committee of Science and Technology of Uzbekistan (F5-T025), CAS PIFI fellowships (2017PB0051, 2017VBA0017) and the High Technology Research and Development Program of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region (201411104). We would like to show our gratitude to the employees of Zangi-Ata Experimental Field Station for growing and maintaining cotton plants and Dr. Andrew J WOOD for language editing.


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Copyright information

© Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tohir A. Bozorov
    • 1
    • 2
  • Rustam M. Usmanov
    • 1
  • Honglan Yang
    • 2
  • Shukhrat A. Hamdullaev
    • 1
  • Sardorbek Musayev
    • 3
  • Jaloliddin Shavkiev
    • 1
  • Saidgani Nabiev
    • 1
  • Daoyuan Zhang
    • 2
  • Alisher A. Abdullaev
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Genetics and Plants Experimental BiologyUzbek Academy of SciencesYukori-YuzUzbekistan
  2. 2.Key Lab of Biogeography and Bioresource in Arid Land, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and GeographyChinese Academy of SciencesUrumqiChina
  3. 3.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringUniversity of ConnecticutStorrsUSA

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