Acclimation of photosynthetic capacity and foliar respiration in Andean tree species to temperature change

Cox, Andrew J.F.; Hartley, Iain P.; Meir, Patrick; Sitch, Stephen; Dusenge, Mirindi Eric; Restrepo, Zorayda; González‐Caro, Sebastian; Villegas, Juan Camilo; Uddling, Johan; Mercado, Lina M. ORCID: 2023 Acclimation of photosynthetic capacity and foliar respiration in Andean tree species to temperature change. New Phytologist, 238 (6). 2329-2344.

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• Climate warming is causing compositional changes in Andean tropical montane forests (TMFs). These shifts are hypothesised to result from differential responses to warming of cold- and warm-affiliated species, with the former experiencing mortality and the latter migrating upslope. The thermal acclimation potential of Andean TMFs remains unknown. • Along a 2000m Andean altitudinal gradient, we planted individuals of cold- and warm-affiliated species (under common soil and irrigation), exposing them to the hot and cold extremes of their thermal niches, respectively. We measured the response of net photosynthesis (Anet), photosynthetic capacity and leaf dark respiration (Rdark) to warming/cooling, five months after planting. • In all species, Anet and photosynthetic capacity at 25°C were highest when growing at growth temperatures (Tg) closest to their thermal means, declining with warming and cooling in cold-affiliated and warm-affiliated species, respectively. When expressed at Tg, photosynthetic capacity and Rdark remained unchanged in cold-affiliated species, but the latter decreased in warm-affiliated counterparts. Rdark at 25°C increased with temperature in all species, but remained unchanged when expressed at Tg. • Both species groups acclimated to temperature, but only warm-affiliated species decreased Rdark to photosynthetic capacity ratio at Tg as temperature increased. This could confer them a competitive advantage under future warming.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Hydro-climate Risks (Science Area 2017-)
ISSN: 0028-646X
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Open Access paper - full text available via Official URL link.
Additional Keywords: photosynthesis, respiration, acclimation, elevation gradient, tropical montane forests
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Meteorology and Climatology
Date made live: 11 Apr 2023 13:37 +0 (UTC)

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