The halophyte ice plant (Mesembryanthemum crystallinum) converts its mode of photosynthesis from C3 to crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) during severe water stress. During the transition to CAM, the plant induces CAM-related genes and changes its diurnal stomatal behavior to take up CO2 efficiently at night. However, limited information concerning this signaling exists. Here, we investigated the changes in the diurnal stomatal behavior of M. crystallinum during its shift in photosynthesis using a detached epidermis. M. crystallinum plants grown under C3 conditions opened their stomata during the day and closed them at night. However, CAM-induced plants closed their stomata during the day and opened them at night. Quantitative analysis of endogenous phytohormones revealed that trans-zeatin levels were high in CAM-induced plants. In contrast, the levels of jasmonic acid (JA) and JA–isoleucine were severely reduced in CAM-induced plants, specifically at night. CAM induction did not alter the levels of abscisic acid; however, inhibitors of abscisic acid synthesis suppressed CAM-induced stomatal closure. These results indicate that M. crystallinum regulates the diurnal balance of cytokinin and JA during CAM transition to alter stomatal behavior.
- Ice plant (Mesembryanthemum crystallinum)
- Stomatal behavior
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agronomy and Crop Science
- Plant Science