Year: 2012

Differential leaf expansion can enable hydraulic acclimation to sun and shade

Carins Murphy MR, Jordan GJ, Brodribb TJ (2012) Differential leaf expansion can enable hydraulic acclimation to sun and shade. Plant, Cell & Environment 35, 1407–1418

Although leaf size is one of the most responsive plant traits to environmental change, the functional benefits of large versus small leaves remain unclear. We hypothesized that modification of leaf size within species resulting from differences in irradiance…

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Fern and Lycophyte Guard Cells Do Not Respond to Endogenous Abscisic Acid

McAdam SAM, Brodri bb TJ (2012) Fern and lycophyte guard cells do not respond to abscisic acid. The Plant Cell. 24, 1510 - 1521.

Stomatal guard cells regulate plant photosynthesis and transpiration. Central to the control of seed plant stomatal movement is the phytohormone abscisic acid (ABA); however, differences in the sensitivity of guard cells to this ubiquitous chemical have been reported…

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Measurements of stem xylem hydraulic conductivity in the laboratory and field

Melcher, P.J., N.M. Holbrook, M.J. Burns, M.A. Zwieniecki, A.R. Cobb, T.J. Brodribb, B. Choat and L. Sack. 2012 Measurements of stem xylem hydraulic conductivity in the laboratory and field. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 3, 685-694.

Xylem hydraulic properties play an essential role in supporting growth and photosynthesis and influence sensitivity to environmental conditions such as drought and freezing. Consequently, stem hydraulic conductance can be used as a comparative measure of overall hydraulic adaptation…

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Global convergence in the vulnerability of forests to drought

Choat B, Jansen S, Brodribb TJ, Cochard H, Delzon S et al. (2012) Global convergence in the vulnerability of forests to drought. Nature 491: 752–755

Shifts in rainfall patterns and increasing temperatures associated with climate change are likely to cause widespread forest decline in regions where droughts are predicted to increase in duration and severity. One primary cause of productivity loss and plant…

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Elegance versus Speed: Examining the Competition between Conifer and Angiosperm Trees

Angiosperm radiation in the Cretaceous is thought to have profoundly diminished the success of the conifers, the other major woody plant group present at the time. However, today the conifers persist and often thrive despite their supposed inferiority…

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Leaf hydraulic vulnerability influences species’ bioclimatic limits in a diverse group of woody angiosperms

Blackman CJ, Brodribb TJ, Jordan GJ, (2012) 'Leaf hydraulic vulnerability influences species' bioclimatic limits in a diverse group of woody angiosperms', Oecologia, vol.168, pp 1-10

The ability of plants to maintain water flow through leaves under water stress-induced tension (assessed as the leaf hydraulic vulnerability; P50leaf) is intimately linked with survival. We examined the significance of P50leaf as an adaptive trait in influencing…

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Leaf evolution in Southern Hemisphere conifers tracks the angiosperm ecological radiation

Biffin, E., Brodribb, T. J., Hill, R. S., Thomas, P., and Lowe, A. J. (2012). Leaf evolution in Southern Hemisphere conifers tracks the angiosperm ecological radiation. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B 279: 341–348.

The angiosperm radiation has been linked to sharp declines in gymnosperm diversity and the virtual elimination of conifers from the tropics. The conifer family Podocarpaceae stands as an exception with highest species diversity in wet equatorial forests. It…

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The maximum height of grasses is determined by roots

Cao K-F, Yang S-J, Zhang Y-J, Brodribb TJ: The maximum height of grasses is determined by roots. Ecol Lett 2012, 15(7):666-672

Grasses such as bamboos can produce upright stems more than 30 m tall, yet the processes that constrain plant height in this important group have never been investigated. Air embolisms form commonly in the water transport system of…

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Stomatal innovation and the rise of seed plants

McAdam, S., & Brodribb, T. (2012). Stomatal innovation and the rise of seed plants. Ecology letters, 15(1), 1–8

Stomatal valves on the leaves of vascular plants not only prevent desiccation but also dynamically regulate water loss to maintain efficient daytime water use. This latter process involves sophisticated active control of stomatal aperture that may be absent…

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