Physiologia plantarum

Heat stress results in loss of chloroplast Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase and increased damage to Photosystem II in combined drought-heat stressed Lotus japonicus.

PMID 20487374


Drought and heat stress have been studied extensively in plants, but most reports involve analysis of response to only one of these stresses. Studies in which both stresses were studied in combination have less commonly been reported. We report the combined effect of drought and heat stress on Photosystem II (PSII) of Lotus japonicus cv. Gifu plants. Photochemistry of PSII was not affected by drought or heat stress alone, but the two stresses together decreased PSII activity as determined by fluorescence emission. Heat stress alone resulted in degradation of D1 and CP47 proteins, and D2 protein was also degraded by combined drought-heat stress. None of these proteins were degraded by drought stress alone. Drought alone induced accumulation of hydrogen peroxide but the drought-heat combination led to an increase in superoxide levels and a decrease in hydrogen peroxide levels. Furthermore, combined drought-heat stress was correlated with an increase in oxidative damage as determined by increased levels of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances. Heat also induced degradation of chloroplast Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD: EC as shown by reduced protein levels and isozyme-specific SOD activity. Loss of Cu/Zn SOD and induction of catalase (CAT: EC activity would explain the altered balance between hydrogen peroxide and superoxide in response to drought vs combined drought-heat stress. Degradation of PSII could thus be caused by the loss of components of chloroplast antioxidant defence systems and subsequent decreased function of PSII. A possible explanation for energy dissipation by L. japonicus under stress conditions is discussed.

Related Materials

Product #



Molecular Formula

Add to Cart

CPISO Chloroplast Isolation Kit, isolation of intact chloroplasts from leaves