UV-B radiation and acclimation in timberline plants

Minna Turunen, Kirsi Latola

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Research has shown that some plants respond to enhanced UV-B radiation by producing smaller and thicker leaves, by increasing the thickness of epidermis and concentration of UV-B absorbing compounds of their surface layers and activation of the antioxidant defence system. The response of high-altitude plants to UV-B radiation in controlled conditions is often less pronounced compared to low-altitude plants, which shows that the alpine timberline plants are adapted to UV-B. These plants may have a simultaneous co-tolerance for several stress factors: acclimation or adaptation to the harsh climate can also increase tolerance to UV-B radiation, and vice versa. On the other hand, alpine timberline plants of northern latitudes may be less protected against increasing UV-B radiation than plants from more southern latitudes and higher elevations due to harsh conditions and weaker preadaptation resulting from lower UV-B radiation exposure. It is evident that more long-term experimental field research is needed in order to study the interaction of climate, soil and UV-B irradiance on the timberline plants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)390-403
Number of pages14
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Volume137
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2005
MoEC publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Acclimation
  • Adaptation
  • Alpine timberline
  • Co-tolerance
  • Conifers
  • Northern timberline
  • UV defence mechanisms
  • UV-B irradiance
  • Woody plants

Field of science

  • Plant biology, microbiology, virology

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