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Differential accumulation of abscisic acid and its catabolites in drought-sensitive and drought-tolerant sunflower seeds

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 December 2009

Andrea Andrade*
Departamento de Ciencias Naturales, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, Físico-Químicas y Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto, 5800Río Cuarto, Argentina
Ana Vigliocco
Departamento de Ciencias Naturales, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, Físico-Químicas y Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto, 5800Río Cuarto, Argentina
Sergio Alemano
Departamento de Ciencias Naturales, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, Físico-Químicas y Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto, 5800Río Cuarto, Argentina
Daniel Alvarez
Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Agropecuaria. INTA-EEA, Manfredi, Argentina
Guillermina Abdala
Departamento de Ciencias Naturales, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas, Físico-Químicas y Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Río Cuarto, 5800Río Cuarto, Argentina
*Correspondence Fax: +54-358-4676230 E-mail:


Eleven sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) inbred lines were evaluated in field and laboratory studies under drought and irrigation. In the field, lines B59, R419 and B67 had reduced seed and oil yield under drought, while no reduction was observed for R432, HAR4 and B71. Lines HA89, R415, R049, RHA274 and R423 presented intermediate responses. In laboratory tests, seeds of line B59 had reduced germination percentages at 200 and 400 mM mannitol, while germination of seeds of lines R432, B71, HAR4, RHA274 and HA89 was reduced only at 400 mM mannitol. Drought-sensitive B59 and drought-tolerant B71 grown under irrigation and drought conditions in the field were selected for hormone assays. Abscisic acid (ABA) and its catabolites in pericarp, embryonic axis and cotyledons of dry and germinated seeds of B59 and B71 were determined. ABA was the major component of the pericarp of dry seeds from B71 and B59 plants grown under drought. The embryonic axis of B71 dry seeds from drought-grown plants also showed high ABA content. The major findings from this study are: (1) the drought-sensitive and -tolerant lines exhibited different ABA and catabolite profiles; (2) water environment during maternal plant growth affected ABA content and the composition of catabolites in mature and germinated seeds; (3) ABA content did not affect germination performance in our conditions; and (4) the dry and germinated seed parts showed different ABA and catabolite profiles.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2009

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