Relating Xylem Cavitation to Gas Exchange in Cotton


Acoustic emissions (AEs) from xylem cavitation events are characteristic of transpiration processes. Though a body of work exists describing AEs and limited stem hydraulic conductivity under water stress, there is limited information about the effects of AEs on stomatal aperture and limitation on carbon assimilation. The objective of this work was to relate AEs to drought stress in cotton. Cotton was grown in mini-lysimeters in the greenhouse and instrumented with a portable photosynthesis system and ultrasonic transducers connected to a digital signal-processing unit. Whole plant transpiration, leaf level gas exchange and ultrasonic AEs were measured. Xylem cavitation events temporally associated with the onset of drought stress. The results are consistent with stomatal closure in response to reduced hydraulic conductance from xylem cavitation events. Clear direct empirical evidence of a reduction in carbon assimilation associated with xylem cavitation resulting from water stress is presented.

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Gitz III, D. , Baker, J. and Lascano, R. (2015) Relating Xylem Cavitation to Gas Exchange in Cotton. American Journal of Plant Sciences, 6, 1742-1751. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2015.611174.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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