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Multivariate patterns of antioxidative and photoprotective defence compounds in Spruce needles at two Central European forests sites of different elevation
journal contributionposted on 2019-10-04, 00:00 authored by Michael Tausz, H Landmesser, Sabine Tausz-Posch, S Monschein, D Grill, O Wienhaus
In this work we measured a set of antioxidative and photoprotective compounds (chlorophylls, carotenoids, tocopherol, ascorbate and glutathione), which were suggested previously as stress markers in conifer needles, at two spruce forest sites at different elevation in Saxony, Germany. Most variables differed significantly between current and 1-year-old needles, but only the content of the xanthophyll cycle per mg total chlorophyll and the oxidation state of glutathione were significantly different between the sites. We applied principal component analysis (PCA) to address the question if underlying accumulated variables are similar to the ones found in spruce needles across Alpine elevation profiles and/or for pines in Mediterranean ecosystems. Four principal components (accumulated variables, PC) representing 68% of the total variance of the dataset were extracted. PC 1 encompassed total chlorophyll, lutein, and β-carotene contents, PC 2 combined the epoxidation state of xanthophylls, ascorbate content and redox state, and glutathione content, PC 3 represented the content of xanthophylls and the redox state of glutathione, and PC 4 encompassed the content of β-carotene and the epoxidation state of xanthophylls. Only PC 3 was significantly different between sites. The PCA structure shows many similarities to corresponding findings in studies on spruce in mountain forests in the Alps and pines in Mediterranean systems. This corroborates the interpretation of PCs as indicative for underlying physiological processes. However, separation of the two investigated sites by PCs was in the present case study not superior to the separation by single input variables. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007.