Acta Physiologiae Plantarum

, 41:167 | Cite as

Chlorophyll a fluorescence analysis reveals divergent photosystem II responses to saline, alkaline and saline–alkaline stresses in the two Lotus japonicus model ecotypes MG20 and Gifu-129

  • César Daniel Bordenave
  • Rubén Rocco
  • Santiago Javier Maiale
  • Maria Paula Campestre
  • Oscar Adolfo Ruiz
  • Andrés Alberto Rodríguez
  • Ana Bernardina MenéndezEmail author
Original Article


Saline and alkaline stresses affect more than 10% of the World’s arable land, limiting agricultural production. Salt-induced stress may affect the photosystem II (PSII) function, altering fluorescence emission. Therefore, changes in fluorescence are used to quantify and analyze abiotic stress responses in plants. So far, no study has focused on the response of PSII to saline, alkaline and saline–alkaline stresses in the model legume Lotus japonicus. For the saline, alkaline and saline–alkaline treatments, plants of the L. japonicus ecotypes MG20 and Gifu-129 were cultivated in sand with nutrient solution, added with NaCl and NaHCO3 in different proportions. Growth, gas exchange, and chlorophyll a fluorescence transient kinetic and OJIP parameters were measured, and chlorophyll a and b were determined. The analysis of the kinetic of chlorophyll a fluorescence showed that NaCl-derived stress sources affect the photochemical events in PSII in both ecotypes, being this effect more evident under higher pH condition, whereas alkalinity per se has a mild or no effect on these events. The saline–alkaline stress induced a more severe effect on Gifu B-129, compared with Miyakojima MG20, whereas NaCl improved primary photochemistry in MG20. Our results allow us to accept the hypothesis that both ecotypes deploy differential responses under the three stressful treatments and that the saline–alkaline stress causes higher damage levels than saline and alkaline stresses alone in relation with structures and sub-processes of the PSII.


Alkalinity Chlorophyll a fluorescence Lotus japonicus OJIP transient Photosynthesis Salinity 



This work was supported by Grants from the Agencia Nacional de promoción Científica y Tecnológica/FONCyT PICTs 2034 and 1611, and the Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET, Argentina).

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 30 kb)
11738_2019_2956_MOESM2_ESM.docx (7 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOCX 7 kb)


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Copyright information

© Franciszek Górski Institute of Plant Physiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • César Daniel Bordenave
    • 1
  • Rubén Rocco
    • 1
  • Santiago Javier Maiale
    • 1
  • Maria Paula Campestre
    • 1
  • Oscar Adolfo Ruiz
    • 1
  • Andrés Alberto Rodríguez
    • 1
  • Ana Bernardina Menéndez
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Instituto Tecnológico de Chascomús, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y TécnicasUniversidad Nacional de General San Martín (INTECH-CONICET-UNSAM)ChascomúsArgentina
  2. 2.Departamento de Biodiversidad y Biología Experimental, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales, Instituto de Micología y Botánica (INMIBO-CONICET)Universidad de Buenos AiresBuenos AiresArgentina

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