Functional Plant Biology Functional Plant Biology Society
Plant function and evolutionary biology

Functional Plant Biology

Functional Plant Biology

Functional Plant Biology publishes new and significant information on the functional biology of plants at all scales from the molecular through whole plant to community. Read more about the journalMore

Editor-in-Chief: Sergey Shabala

Current Issue

Functional Plant Biology

Volume 44 Number 3 2017

FP16078Stomatal behaviour under terminal drought affects post-anthesis water use in wheat

Renu Saradadevi, Helen Bramley, Jairo A. Palta and Kadambot H. M. Siddique
pp. 279-289

Terminal drought reduced grain yield in wheat by affecting grain filling. To expose the shallow part of the root system to soil dryness while the roots at depth have access to water, watering was provided only to the bottom 30 cm of the pot from anthesis. The wheat genotype that showed a higher degree of stomatal closure limited post-anthesis water uptake at depth. Grain yield was related to post-anthesis water use.

FP16202Phenotyping of plants in competitive but controlled environments: a study of drought response in transgenic wheat

Nataliya Kovalchuk, Hamid Laga, Jinhai Cai, Pankaj Kumar, Boris Parent, Zhi Lu, Stanley J. Miklavcic and Stephan M. Haefele
pp. 290-301

Drought as a limiting factor for plant growth, development and reproduction remains a major challenge for Australian breeders and growers, and precise phenotyping techniques are needed urgently. We developed a platform where transgenic wheat plants can be grown and tested in competition and under conditions similar to those in a field situation. New imaging techniques developed for non-destructive plant growth characterisation are promising and can be used for a range of image-based plant phenotyping analyses.

FP16214Photoprotective and antioxidative mechanisms against oxidative damage in Fargesia rufa subjected to drought and salinity

Cheng-Gang Liu, Qing-Wei Wang, Yan-Qiang Jin, Kai-Wen Pan and Yan-Jie Wang
pp. 302-311

Drought and salinity adversely affect plant productivity. Here, we investigated the photoprotective and antioxidative mechanisms against oxidative damage in bamboo (Fargesia rufa Yi) subjected to isolated and combined drought and salinity stresses. Relative to salinity and combined stress, F. rufa under drought exhibit highly efficient mechanism to prevent oxidative damage, which allows accelerated recovery of photosynthetic performance once the stress is removed.

FP16194Distinct growth and physiological responses of Arabidopsis thaliana natural accessions to drought stress and their detection using spectral reflectance and thermal imaging

Karel Klem, Kumud B. Mishra, Kateřina Novotná, Barbora Rapantová, Petra Hodaňová, Anamika Mishra, Daniel Kováč and Otmar Urban
pp. 312-323

Within this study we have demonstrated that the physiological tolerance to drought in certain Arabidopsis thaliana accessions is closely associated with the reduction of leaf area, and vice versa. This means that the ability to reduce leaf area under drought stress may represent a suitable indicator of drought tolerance. We also proved that the physiological response of plants to drought can be reliably monitored with non-invasive methods of thermal imaging and spectral reflectance.


Regulation of water transport in fruits like grape clusters is pivotal for fruit development and ripening. Comparing two contrasting grape varieties showed that the differing hydraulic behaviour observed in vegetative structures also extends to their fruit. The previously observed decline in xylem water uptake into ripening berries could be explained by a decrease in the suction of the fruit rather than increasing hydraulic resistance.

FP16234Impact of fog drip versus fog immersion on the physiology of Bishop pine saplings

Sara A. Baguskas, Jennifer Y. King, Douglas T. Fischer, Carla M. D'Antonio and Christopher J. Still
pp. 339-350

Fog water is known to offset plant water stress during the dry season in Mediterranean ecosystems; however, the underlying mechanisms of fog water use and its impact on physiological function has yet to be elucidated for many species. We assessed the impact of fog drip and fog immersion on the physiological function of a drought-sensitive pine species restricted to the fog belt of coastal California. Fog drip to the soil is the primary mechanism by which fog water inputs relieve stress and enhance instantaneous carbon gain of Bishop pine saplings, although foliar absorption is also a viable mechanism by which Bishop pines use fog water. Our results are important for understanding how the carbon and water relations of foggy forests may be impacted by potential changes in the fog regime.

FP16222The half-life of the cytochrome bf complex in leaves of pea plants after transfer from moderately-high growth light to low light

Hui Zhu, Ling-Da Zeng, Xiao-Ping Yi, Chang-Lian Peng, Wang-Feng Zhang and Wah Soon Chow
pp. 351-357

The cytochrome (cyt) bf complex content is the main factor limiting photosynthetic electron transport capacity, but the cyt bf life-time is not well characterised. We found that upon transferring high-light-grown pea plants to low light, the cyt f content decreased with a half-life of 1.7 days, even with the re-introduction of high light during part of the low-light photoperiod. It appears that mature leaves could not make new cyt bf complex, which was inevitably partially lost in low light.


Elevated temperature is often predicted to lead to increased susceptibility of plants to pathogens, but little information is available on pathogen transcriptome changes associated with pathogenicity at high temperature. Using Magnaporthe oryzae and rice as a model, we have shown that pre-exposure of plants to heat promoted pathogen proliferation, increased effector encoding transcripts in planta, and accelerated plant tissue necrosis. Thus, increasing temperatures may result in an increase in disease by facilitating rapid colonisation of plant tissues by the pathogen.

Online Early

The peer-reviewed and edited version of record published online before inclusion in an issue

Published online 13 February 2017

FP16347Spatial distribution of organelles in leaf cells and soybean root nodules revealed by focused ion beam-scanning electron microscopy

Brandon C. Reagan, Paul J. -Y. Kim, Preston D. Perry, John R. Dunlap and Tessa M. Burch-Smith
 

Focussed ion bean scanning electron microscopy (FIB-SEM) is a technique that can be used to generate 3D renderings of cells and their contents. Although FIB-SEM has been regularly used to investigate animal cells and tissues, it has rarely been deployed to study plant structures. Here we demonstrate that FIB-SEM can easily be used to study plant samples and have discovered previously unknown arrangements of organelles and membranes in those samples.

Published online 03 February 2017

FP16322Formation mechanisms of superoxide radical and hydrogen peroxide in chloroplasts, and factors determining the signalling by hydrogen peroxide

Boris N. Ivanov, Maria M. Borisova-Mubarakshina and Marina A. Kozuleva
 

Photosynthetic electron transport chain is not only source of ATP and NADPH for photosynthesis; it is a sensor, informing adaptation systems of plant about environmental changes. An important transmitter of this information is hydrogen peroxide whose mechanisms of formation are presented, laying special emphasis on the formation outside and within thylakoid membrane. It is discussed, that the formation place can ensure definite signal about the specific environmental change.

Published online 03 February 2017

FP16383The inhibition of photosynthesis under water deficit conditions is more severe in flecked than uniform irradiance in rice (Oryza sativa) plants

Jiali Sun, Qiangqiang Zhang, Muhammad Adnan Tabassum, Miao Ye, Shaobing Peng and Yong Li
 

The effect of water deficit on photosynthesis in fluctuating irradiance is not well understood, although leaves within a canopy experience a highly variable light environment. This study was conducted by investigating steady-state and dynamic photosynthesis of two rice (Oryza sativa L.) cultivars grown under well-watered and water stress conditions. We found that the inhibition of photosynthesis under water deficit condition is more severe in flecked than steady-state irradiance.

Published online 31 January 2017

FP16258Nitrate increases ethylene production and aerenchyma formation in roots of lowland rice plants under water stress

Cuimin Gao, Lei Ding, Yingrui Li, Yupei Chen, Jingwen Zhu, Mian Gu, Yong Li, Guohua Xu, Qirong Shen and Shiwei Guo
 

It remains unclear how water stress affects ethylene production and aerenchyma formation in rice plant supply with different nitrogen forms. The results showed that nitrate nutrition increased ethylene production and aerenchyma formation in roots of lowland rice plants under water stress. We concluded that nitrogen source supply is involved in the regulation of ethylene biosynthesis and function, especially under water stress.

Published online 31 January 2017

FP16360Malus domestica ADF1 severs actin filaments in growing pollen tubes

Qing Yang, ShengNan Wang, ChuanBao Wu, QiuLei Zhang, Yi Zhang, QiuJu Chen, Yang Li, Li Hao, Zhaoyu Gu, Wei Li and Tianzhong Li
 

In this work we cloned a new gene ADF1 that severs actin filaments in apple pollen tubes. The aim of the work is to give references to understand the function of ADF generally in vitro and in vivo and the main discovery is ADF severs actin filaments. Finally, we fit the original images into the software Photoshop 6.0 for bigger pictures and use software Image J to produce the video clips.

Published online 11 January 2017

FP16321Arabidopsis thaliana phytaspase: identification and peculiar properties

Nina V. Chichkova, Raisa A. Galiullina, Larisa V. Mochalova, Svetlana V. Trusova, Zulfazli M. Sobri, Patrick Gallois and Andrey B. Vartapetian
 

Although plant proteases of the phytaspase family are important contributors to stress-induced plant cell death, phytaspase of a classical model plant Arabidopsis thaliana has escaped identification thus far. We identified the Arabidopsis phytaspase-encoding gene and characterised the recombinant enzyme. Substrate specificity and properties of the Arabidopsis phytaspase display both important similarities with and distinctions from the already characterised phytaspases.

Published online 09 January 2017

FP16299Vein density is independent of epidermal cell size in Arabidopsis mutants

Madeline R. Carins Murphy, Graham J. Dow, Gregory J. Jordan and Timothy J. Brodribb
 

It has been proposed that the densities at which veins and stomata are present in leaves are co-ordinated by epidermal cell expansion. However, we found that vein density is not causally linked to epidermal cell size. This suggests that adaptation favours synchronised changes to cell size in different leaf tissues to coordinate vein and stomatal density, and thus, maintain a balance between water supply and transpirational demand.

Published online 05 January 2017

FP16266Active defence by an Australian native host, Lomandra longifolia, provides resistance against Phytophthora cinnamomi

Md Tohidul Islam, James E. Rookes and David M. Cahill
 

The plant pathogen Phytophthora cinnamomi poses a major threat to a wide range of host plants. This study examined resistance in Lomandra longifolia (an Australian native plant) and found high levels of resistance to infection, along with the identification of several resistant-related components. Understanding L. longifolia’s resistance to the pathogen may help develop strategies for protection of more susceptible species.

Published online 21 December 2016

FP16272Evaluation of root porosity and radial oxygen loss of disomic addition lines of Hordeum marinum in wheat

Dennis Konnerup, A. l. Imran Malik, A. K. M. R. Islam and Timothy David Colmer
 

Hordeum marinum is a waterlogging-tolerant wild relative of wheat (Triticum aestivum) and has been hybridised with wheat to produce amphiploids containing the genomes from both species. We found that although an amphiploid had improved root aeration traits compared with the wheat parent, the addition lines containing chromosome pairs did not have these traits of greater root porosity or a barrier to radial O2 loss. Thus, these root aeration traits were not expressed in any of the six of the seven possible chromosome addition lines, hampering efforts to use H. marinum as a donor of waterlogging tolerance to wheat.

Published online 20 December 2016

FP16337cGMP signalling in plants: from enigma to main stream

Jean-Charles Isner and Frans J. M. Maathuis
 

Cyclic GMP (cGMP) signalling in plants is crucial for many physiological processes. Recent analytical and genomic developments now allow detailed studies into the biochemistry and physiological role of cGMP in plants, and the latest findings are reviewed in this article.

Published online 16 December 2016

FP16338Two-pore cation (TPC) channel: not a shorthanded one

Igor Pottosin and Oxana Dobrovinskaya
 

Large conductance SV/TPC1 channels are ubiquitously and abundantly expressed in the vacuolar membranes of higher plants. They are unique established Ca2+-permeable channels in vacuoles, but their activity is strongly negatively controlled, so that they were believed to be inactive or to act only locally. Recent evidence suggests the key role of SV/TPC1 channels in the long-distance Ca2+ signalling.

Published online 14 December 2016

FP16239Transcriptome profiling of rice seedlings under cold stress

Luciano C. da Maia, Pablo R. B. Cadore, Leticia C. Benitez, Rodrigo Danielowski, Eugenia J. B. Braga, Paulo R. R. Fagundes, Ariano M. Magalhães and Antonio Costa de Oliveira
 

Sub-optimal environmental conditions for crops are called abiotic stress; cold is one of the main stresses for rice. In this study, the RNAseq technique was used to identify genes expressed in response to cold in rice germination. The results indicated that a large number of genes were expressed in the sensitive genotype and few genes in the tolerant genotype. We have identified possible genes that are responsible for cold tolerance in rice plants of the cold tolerant cultivar.


Plants adapt to environmental light conditions with the use of the sophisticated phytochrome system. In this work, polymorphism of its major component – phytochrome A– was investigated. With the use of transgenic Arabidopsis and fluorescence technique, it was shown that two molecular types of the photoreceptor differ by the state of phosphorylation and their existence accounts for its complex functions.

Published online 09 November 2016

FP16242Rapid changes in root HvPIP2;2 aquaporins abundance and ABA concentration are required to enhance root hydraulic conductivity and maintain leaf water potential in response to increased evaporative demand

Dmitry S. Veselov, Dmitry S. Veselov, Guzel V. Sharipova, Guzel V. Sharipova, Stanislav Yu. Veselov, Stanislav Yu. Veselov, Ian C. Dodd, Ian C. Dodd, Igor Ivanov, Igor Ivanov, Guzel R. Kudoyarova and Guzel R. Kudoyarova
 

The ABA-deficient barley mutant Az34 and wild type (WT) were exposed to air warming. Although transpiration rate of both genotypes increased, leaf water potential decreased in the mutant but was maintained in WT plants. Only WT plants showed increased root ABA accumulation, which increased root hydraulic conductivity and aquaporin abundance, which seems important in maintaining leaf hydration.

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