Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) in an epiphytic ant-plant, Myrmecodia beccarii Hook.f. (Rubiaceae)

Tsen, Edward W.J., and Holtum, Joseph A.M. (2012) Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) in an epiphytic ant-plant, Myrmecodia beccarii Hook.f. (Rubiaceae). Photosynthesis Research, 113 (1-3). pp. 311-320.

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Abstract

This study demonstrates unequivocally the presence of crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) in a species of the Rubiaceae, the fourth largest angiosperm plant family. The tropical Australian endemic epiphytic ant-plant, Myrmecodia beccarii Hook.f., exhibits net CO₂ uptake in the dark and a concomitant accumulation of titratable acidity in plants in the field and in cultivation. Plants growing near Cardwell, in a north Queensland coastal seasonally dry forest of Melaleuca viridiflora Sol. ex Gaertn., accumulated ~50 % of their 24 h carbon gain in the dark during the warm wet season. During the transition from the wet season to the dry season, 24 h carbon gain was reduced whilst the proportion of carbon accumulated during the dark increased. By mid dry season many plants exhibited zero net carbon uptake over 24 h, but CO₂ uptake in the dark was observed in some plants following localised rainfall. In a shade-house experiment, droughted plants in which CO₂ uptake in the light was absent and dark CO₂ uptake was reduced, were able to return to relatively high rates of CO₂ uptake in the light and dark within 12 h of rewatering.

Item ID: 23633
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 0166-8595
Keywords: ant-plant, crassulacean acid metabolism, Hydnophytinae, Melaleuca, Myrmecophyte, Rubiaceae, mutualism
Date Deposited: 10 Oct 2012 05:26
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0699 Other Biological Sciences > 069902 Global Change Biology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960805 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity at Regional or Larger Scales @ 100%
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