Effect of N deficiency on leaf growth and cell wall peroxidase activity in contrasting maize genotypes
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Two maize genotypes differing in leaf elongation rate (high-LER and low-LER) were used for the investigation of the effects of nitrogen deficiency on leaf growth and development and activity of enzyme cell wall peroxidase in the leaf growth zone. Plants were grown in a growth cabinet in perlite as a substrate and watered with complete N-NO3 solution (+N) and N-NO3 deficient solution (-N). Comparison between the investigated genotypes showed that final leaf length in both N treatments was related with LER, but not with the duration of leaf elongation. Faster leaf elongation rate in high-LER compared with low-LER genotype, was associated with longer growth zone, a bigger number of cells in it, and higher cell flux rate, although cell elongation rate was similar in both genotypes. These lines of evidence indirectly indicated that leaves of the faster growing genotype were characterized by higher meristematic activity. Nitrogen deficiency reduced the flux of cells and cell elongation rate,... length of cell division zone and the number of cells in whole zone, significantly for both genotypes, although duration of cell elongation was increased and final epidermal cell length was unchanged. These results showed that N deficiency reduced both cell division and cell elongation, which in turn resulted in decreased leaf length and prolonged time for leaf development. Nitrogen deficiency significantly increased both bulk and segmental cell wall peroxidase activity in the growth zone of both investigated genotypes, thus showing an interaction between leaf growth cessation and enzyme activity.
Keywords:cell wall-associated peroxidase activity / growth / N deficiency / Zea mays L
Source:Plant and Soil, 2004, 265, 1-2, 211-223
- Springer, Dordrecht