Research Area: Leaf Hydraulics and Photosynthesis

Mapping xylem failure in disparate organs of whole plants reveals extreme resistance in olive roots

Rodriguez‐Dominguez, C. M., Carins Murphy, M. R., Lucani, C. and Brodribb, T. J. (2018), Mapping xylem failure in disparate organs of whole plants reveals extreme resistance in olive roots. New Phytol, 218: 1025-1035. doi:10.1111/nph.15079

The capacity of plant species to resist xylem cavitation is an important determinant of resistance to drought, mortality thresholds, geographic distribution and productivity. Unravelling the role of xylem cavitation vulnerability in plant evolution and adaptation requires a clear…

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Coordinated plasticity maintains hydraulic safety in sunflower leaves

Cardoso AA, Brodribb TJ, Lucani CJ, DaMatta FM, McAdam SAM. Coordinated plasticity maintains hydraulic safety in sunflower leaves. Plant Cell Environ. 2018. https://doi.org/10.1111/pce.13335

The air‐seeding threshold water potential establishes a hydraulic limit on the ability of woody species to survive in water‐limiting environments, but herbs may be more plastic in terms of their ability to adapt to drying conditions. Here we…

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Casting light on xylem vulnerability in an herbaceous species reveals a lack of segmentation

Finding thresholds at which loss of plant functionality occurs during drought is critical for predicting future crop productivity and survival. Xylem resistance to embolism has been suggested as a key trait associated with water-stress tolerance. Although a substantial…

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Optical Measurement of Stem Xylem Vulnerability

Timothy John Brodribb, Marc Carriqui, Sylvain Delzon, Christopher Lucani (2017) Optical Measurement os Stem Xylem Vulnerability. Plant Physiology Jul 2017, pp.00552.2017; DOI: 10.1104/pp.17.00552

The vulnerability of plant water transport tissues to a loss of function by cavitation during water stress is a key indicator of the survival capabilities of plant species during drought. Quantifying this important metric has been greatly advanced…

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Residual transpiration as a component of salinity stress tolerance mechanism: a case study for barley

Residual transpiration as a component of salinity stress tolerance mechanism: a case study for barley Md. Hasanuzzaman, Noel W. Davies, Lana Shabala, Meixue Zhou, Tim J. Brodribb and Sergey Shabala https://doi.org/10.1186/s12870-017-1054-y

Background: While most water loss from leaf surfaces occurs via stomata, part of this loss also occurs through the leaf cuticle, even when the stomata are fully closed. This component, termed residual transpiration, dominates during the night and…

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Vein density is independent of epidermal cell size in Arabidopsis mutants

Carins Murphy Madeline R., Dow Graham J., Jordan Gregory J., Brodribb Timothy J. (2017) Vein density is independent of epidermal cell size in Arabidopsis mutants. Functional Plant Biology 44, 410-418.

Densities of leaf minor veins and stomata are co-ordinated within and across vascular plants. This maximises the benefit-to-cost ratio of leaf construction by ensuring stomata receive the minimum amount of water required to maintain optimal aperture. A ‘passive…

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Linking auxin with photosynthetic rate via leaf venation

Scott A M McAdam, Morgane P Eléouët, Melanie Best, Timothy John Brodribb, Madeline Rose Carins Murphy, Sam David Cook, Marion Dalmais, Theodore Dimitriou, Ariane Gelinas-Marion, Warwick M Gill, Matthew Hegarty, Julie M.I. Hofer, Mary Maconochie, Erin L McAdam, Peter McGuiness, David S Nichols, John J. Ross, Frances C. Sussmilch, Shelley Urquhart (2017) Linking auxin with photosynthetic rate via leaf venation. Plant Physiology DOI: https://doi.org/10.1104/pp.17.00535

Land plants lose vast quantities of water to the atmosphere during photosynthetic gas exchange. In angiosperms a complex network of veins irrigates the leaf, and it is widely held that the density and placement of these veins determines…

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Amphistomatic leaf surfaces independently regulate gas exchange in response to variations in evaporative demand

Freya Richardson, Timothy J. Brodribb, Gregory J. Jordan; Amphistomatic leaf surfaces independently regulate gas exchange in response to variations in evaporative demand, Tree Physiology, Volume 37, Issue 7, 1 July 2017, Pages 869–878, https://doi.org/10.1093/treephys/tpx073

The occurrence of amphistomatic leaves (stomata on both surfaces) versus hypostomatic leaves (stomata limited to the lower or abaxial surface) has strong associations with environment. Amphistomy provides the advantage of higher conductance of CO2 for photosynthesis, however, unless…

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Floral mass per area and water maintenance traits are correlated with floral longevity in Paphiopedilum (Orchidaceae)

Zhang FP, Yang YJ, Yang QJ, Zhang W, Brodribb TJ, Hao GY, Hu H, Zhang SB (2017) Floral mass per area and water maintenance traits are correlated with floral longevity in Paphiopedilum (Orchidaceae). Frontiers in Plant Science 8:501

Floral longevity (FL) determines the balance between pollination success and flower maintenance. While a longer floral duration enhances the ability of plants to attract pollinators, it can be detrimental if it negatively affects overall plant fitness. Longer-lived leaves…

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A water availability gradient reveals the deficit level required to affect traits in potted juvenile Eucalyptus globulus

McKeirnan. AB, Potts. BM, Hovenden. MJ, Brodribb. TJ, Davies. NW, Rodemann. T, McAdam. SAM, O'Reilly Wapstra. JM (2017) A water availability gradient reveals the deficit level required to affect traits in potted juvenile Eucalyptus globulus. Annals of Botany 119: 1043-1052

Drought leading to soil water deficit can have severe impacts on plants. Water deficit may lead to plant water stress and affect growth and chemical traits. Plant secondary metabolite (PSM) responses to water deficit vary between compounds and…

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