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Physique et biologie moléculaire de la vulnérabilité du xylème à la cavitation

Abstract : Vulnerability to cavitation is an important feature for drought tolerance of trees. Understanding of the molecular basis of vulnerability to cavitation would be useful to predict the behavior of natural populations in the context of changing climate. This work focuses on the physical and genetic basis of vulnerability to cavitation and targets pits because they represent main candidates for the spread of embolism in wood. We propose a model of the mechanical behavior of pits while cavitation occurs. The model shows how the pits geometry influences their mechanical properties and allows explaining interspecific variability of vulnerability to cavitation. On one hand, we constructed transgenic poplars modified for pectin metabolism. On the other hand, we showed that Arabidopsis thaliana is a model plant that can be used for the study of the molecular basis of vulnerability to cavitation. Studies of poplars’ transgenic lines and Arabidopsis thaliana mutant modified for a polygalacturonase highlights the involvement of pectins in vulnerability to cavitation. Our results suggest that pectins that are located on the annulus of the pit membrane have a role in vulnerability to cavitation.
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Aude Tixier. Physique et biologie moléculaire de la vulnérabilité du xylème à la cavitation. Sciences agricoles. Université Blaise Pascal - Clermont-Ferrand II, 2013. Français. ⟨NNT : 2013CLF22420⟩. ⟨tel-00968059⟩

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