The response of leaves to heat stress in tomato plants with source-sink modulated by growth regulators

Zofia Starck, Barbara Witek-Czcpryńska, Dorota Blancard


The response to heat stress was investigated in heat-sensitive, Roma V. F. and heat-tolerant, Robin, cultivars whose fruit growth was stimulated by NOA + GA3 , or NOA + GA3 + zeatin. The treated plants were compared with untreated control plant. In each of these series half of the plants were subjected to one or three cycles of heat stress. A single cycle of 38°/25°C day and night did not significantly affect either the respiration rate or chlorophyll content. In PGR-untreated intact cv. Roma, heat stress inhibited starch formation during the day and strongly depressed night export from the blades. High temperature depressed the night transport less in plants having a higher sink demand of fruits in plant treated with PGR. In this case the amount of substances available for export was much higher and both sugars and starch were more intensively remobilized at night. In intact Robin plants, PGR and heat stress much less affected sugar and starch content. High temperature diminished noctural starch remobilization only in the NOA + GA3 series. Leaf disc growth was evaluated as a measure of response to heat stress after elimination of the direct effect of fruit demands. One cycle of high temperature did not negatively affect the growth of leaf discs; it even caused thermal low growth activation in both cultivars. Three cycles of heat stress depressed leaf disc growth after short-term stimulation, especially in Roma plants. Immediately after 3-day heat stress, there was no response of discs to GA3 or zeatin added to the solution on which the discs were floated. Leaf disc growth of Robin control and NOA + GA3 series was very similar in plants from optimal temperature conditions. High temperature inhibited only disc growth of the NOA + GA3 series owing to depression of starch break-down, diminishing the pool of sugars. In contrast, leaf discs of Roma cv. excided from NOA + GA3 treated plants from the optimal temperature series, grew more intensively as compared with control plants, owing to a higher content of sugar available for growth.


growth regulators; heat stress; night starch degradation; sugars; tomato

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Journal ISSN:
  • 2083-9480 (online)
  • 0001-6977 (print; ceased since 2016)
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