Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2019, Vol. 43 ›› Issue (4): 296-304.doi: 10.17521/cjpe.2019.0032

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Short-term effects of combined elevated ozone and limited irrigation on accumulation and allocation of non-structural carbohydrates in leaves and roots of poplar sapling

ZHOU Hui-Min1,2,LI Pin2,3,FENG Zhao-Zhong3,4,*(),ZHANG Yin-Bo5,*()   

  1. 1 Institute of Loess Plateau, Shanxi University, Taiyuan 030006, China
    2 State Key Laboratory of Urban and Regional Ecology, Research Centre for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100085, China
    3 College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 101408, China
    4 Institute of Ecology, Nanjing University of Information Sciences & Technology, Nanjing 210044, China;
    5 College of Environmental Science and Resources, Shanxi University, Taiyuan 030006, China
  • Received:2019-02-11 Revised:2019-04-17 Online:2019-08-29 Published:2019-04-20
  • Contact: FENG Zhao-Zhong,ZHANG Yin-Bo;
  • Supported by:
    Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China(31870458);Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China(41771034)


AimsIntensified human activities has resulted in more extreme droughts and high ground-level ozone (O3) concentration during plant growing seasons. To clarify the combined effects of elevated O3 (E-O3) and drought on plants, we investigated the effects of elevated O3, drought and their interaction on the accumulation and allocation of non-structural carbohydrates (TNC) in leaves and fine roots of poplar.
MethodsThe O3-sensitive poplar ‘546’ (Populus deltoides cv. ‘55/56’ × P. deltoides cv. ‘Imperial’) saplings were exposed to two O3 treatments (charcoal-filtered air (CF) and non-filtered ambient air (NF) + 40 nmol·mol-1 O3 (E-O3)), and two watering treatments (control, well-watered and drought, reduced watering) using open-top chambers (OTCS). The content of TNC and its components (glucose, fructose, sucrose, polysaccharides, total soluble sugars and starch) in leaves and fine roots were measured.
Important findings E-O3 significantly decreased the content of starch and TNC, but increased the content of fructose, glucose and total soluble sugar in leaves. However, E-O3 did not have significant effects on starch and soluble sugars in fine roots. In addition, drought significantly increased the content of fructose and polysaccharide, but decreased the content of sucrose in fine roots, although drought had no significant impacts on the content of starch and soluble sugars in leaves. There was significant interaction of O3 and drought on the content of polysaccharides and total soluble sugar in leaves, as indicated by the significant increase by E-O3 under well-watered irrigation, but no effects under drought. E-O3 significantly increased the ratio of root to leaf in TNC content, but not under well water condition. In conclusion, E-O3 affected the content of TNC and its components in leaves, while drought affected them in fine roots. From the response of TNC, moderate drought mitigates the negative effects of O3 pollution on plants.

Key words: O3, drought, non-structural carbohydrate, poplar, fine root, leaf

Table 1

Analysis of variance analysis of non-structural carbohydrates (TNC) components in leaves and fine roots of poplar by O3 and drought"

O3 × Drought
葡萄糖 Glucose 0.047 0.239 0.685
果糖 Fructose 0.004 0.563 0.394
蔗糖 Sucrose 0.217 0.384 0.995
多糖 Polysaccharide 0.128 0.227 0.039
Total soluble sugar
0.003 0.449 0.009
淀粉 Starch 0.002 0.130 0.885
TNC 0.027 0.257 0.231
葡萄糖 Glucose 0.546 0.282 0.980
果糖 Fructose 0.768 <0.001 0.459
蔗糖 Sucrose 0.970 0.002 0.455
多糖 Polysaccharide 0.575 0.025 0.245
Total soluble sugar
0.494 0.168 0.157
淀粉 Starch 0.291 0.946 0.661
TNC 0.294 0.244 0.177
Fine root/
Total soluble sugar
0.193 0.427 0.013
淀粉 Starch 0.005 0.237 0.372
TNC 0.005 0.03 0.022

Fig. 1

Effects of elevated ozone and drought on the total non-structural carbohydrates (TNC) content in leaves (A) and fine roots (B) of poplar saplings (mean ± SE). The same lowercase letter in the figures stands for non-significant difference between treatments (p > 0.05). CF, charcoal-filtered air; NF40, non-filtered air + 40 nmol·mol-1 O3."

Fig. 2

Effects of ozone and drought on glucose, fructose, sucrose, polysaccharide, total soluble sugar and starch in leaves of poplar saplings (mean ± SE). Different lowercase letters in the figures stand for the significant difference between treatments (p < 0.05). CF, charcoal-filtered air; NF40, non-filtered air + 40 nmol·mol-1 O3."

Fig. 3

Effect of elevated ozone and drought on the glucose, fructose, sucrose, polysaccharide, total soluble sugar and starch in fine roots (mean ± SE). Different letters in the figures stand for the significant difference between treatments (p < 0.05). CF, charcoal- filtered air; NF40, non-filtered air + 40 nmol·mol-1 O3."

Fig. 4

Effects of elevated ozone and drought on the ratio of fine roots to leaves in total soluble sugar, starch and total non-structural carbohydrates of poplar saplings (mean ± SE). Different letters in the figures stand for the significant difference between treatments (p < 0.05). CF, charcoal-filtered air; NF40, non-filtered air + 40 nmol·mol-1 O3."

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