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Leaf Gas Exchange and Oxidative Stress in Sorghum Plants Supplied with Silicon and Infected by Colletotrichum sublineolum

September 2012 , Volume 102 , Number  9
Pages  892 - 898

Renata Sousa Resende, Fabrício Ávila Rodrigues, Paulo Cezar Cavatte, Samuel Cordeiro Vitor Martins, Wiler Ribas Moreira, Agnaldo Rodrigues Melo Chaves, and Fábio Murilo DaMatta

First, second, and fifth authors: Viçosa Federal University, Department of Plant Pathology, Laboratory of Host–Parasite Interaction, Viçosa, Minas Gerais State, 36.570-000, Brazil; and third, fourth, sixth, and seventh authors: Viçosa Federal University, Department of Biology, Viçosa, Minas Gerais State, 36.570-000, Brazil.

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Accepted for publication 28 May 2012.

Considering the economic importance of anthracnose, caused by Colletotrichum sublineolum, and silicon (Si) to enhance sorghum resistance against this disease, this study aimed to investigate the effect of this element on leaf gas exchange and also the antioxidative system when infected by C. sublineolum. Plants from sorghum line CMSXS142 (BR 009 [Tx623] – Texas), growing in hydroponic culture with (+Si, 2 mM) or without (–Si) Si, were inoculated with C. sublineolum. Disease severity was assessed at 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10 days after inoculation (dai) and data were used to calculate the area under anthracnose progress curve (AUAPC). Further, the net carbon assimilation rate (A), stomatal conductance to water vapor (gs), internal-to-ambient CO2 concentration ratio (Ci/Ca), and transpiration rate (E); the activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), and glutathione reductase (GR); the electrolyte leakage (EL), and the concentrations of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and malondialdehyde (MDA) were determined. The AUAPC was reduced by 86% for the +Si plants compared with the –Si plants. The values of A, gs, and E were lower upon inoculation of –Si plants in contrast to inoculated +Si plants with decreases of 31 and 60% for A, 34 and 61% for gs, and 27 and 57% for E, respectively, at 4 and 8 dai. For the noninoculated plants, there was no significant difference between the –Si and +Si treatments for the values of A, gs, and E. The Ci/Ca ratio was similar between the –Si and +Si treatments, regardless of the pathogen inoculation. The activities of SOD, CAT, APX, and GR tended to be higher in the +Si plants compared with the –Si plants upon inoculation with C. sublineolum. The EL significantly increased for –Si plants compared with +Si plants. The MDA concentration significantly increased by 31 and 38% at 4 and 8 dai, respectively, for the –Si plants compared with the +Si plants. Based on these results, Si may have a positive effect on sorghum physiology when infected by C. sublineolum through the maintenance of carbon fixation and also by enhancing the antioxidant system, which resulted in an increase in reactive oxygen species scavenging and, ultimately, reduced damage to the cell membranes.

Additional keywords: acervulus, antioxidant system, photosynthesis, Sorghum bicolor.

© 2012 The American Phytopathological Society