Acta Univ. Agric. Silvic. Mendelianae Brun. 2015, 63, 87-93
Published online 2015-03-14

Use of ABA Treatment for the Activation of Drought Protective Mechanisms in Barley Under Non-stress Conditions

Lucie Melišová1, Marie Hronková2, Ludmila Holková1, Marek Klemš3, Pavlína Smutná1

1Department of Crop Science, Breeding and Plant Medicine, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic
2Biology Centre AS CR, v.v.i., Institute of Plant Molecular Biology, Branišovská 31/1160, 370 05 České Budějovice, Czech Republic
3Department of Plant Biology, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic

The present study evaluated the sensitivity of three different barley genotypes to stress simulated by the application of exogenous abscisic acid (20 µmol.l−1) at the early stage of the plant development. We used RIA method, instantaneous water use efficiency (WUE), the discrimination of 13C (Δ13C) and the expression levels of Dhn4 gene. The increase of ABA concentration in leaves after exogenous ABA application was detected in all tested genotypes; however, the lowest amount was found in the most tolerant genotype. Increased level of the instantaneous WUE after ABA treatment was found in all genotypes. The Δ13C in ABA treated plants decreased, however, relatively drought-tolerant genotype Tadmor showed lower discrimination even in control variant. The genotype-dependent differences were observed in the expression levels of Dhn4 gene in the leaves. High expression level of this gene was observed in Tadmor. Based on the exogenous ABA level, it was possible to distinguish two types of response of plants to exogenous ABA. Tadmor represented one of them as manifesting high sensitivity to exogenous ABA, leading to fast induction of Dhn4 gene relative expression. Conversely, spring genotypes of Jersey and Malz manifested slower response to exogenous ABA as well as lower WUE values and relative expression of Dhn4. The results supported the idea that ABA application may activate similar stress reactions in plants as drought conditions and additionally the intensity of this reaction is genotype dependent.


This study was funded by IGA IG290071 grant of the Mendel University in Brno and by the grant of the NAZV QJ1310055. We would like to thank Ladislav Marek and Jiří Květoň from the Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia for carbon isotope analyses and Jiří Šantrůček for providing IRMS. We would also like to thank Klára Kosová for her helpful comments on this manuscript.


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