Posidonia oceanica beds form one of the most important coastal ecosystems in the Mediterranean basin and represent a good indicator of the seawater quality, being strongly sensitive to human perturbations. The aim of the present study is to verify whether changes in cytophysiological features of this seagrass could mark early altered environmental conditions. In this context, we investigated in juvenile and intermediate leaves: (1) the presence and structure of phenolic compounds, due to their role in the defence response against biotic and abiotic stress; (2) the presence and distribution of cytokinins, because of their key role in leaf growth and senescence as well as in relation to their interaction in light signalling. Significant and measurable increases in the amount of phenols as well as changes in cytokinins distribution were detected in Posidonia leaves collected from meadows subjected to disturbed environmental conditions as compared to those of preserved ones. These results clearly indicated that these variables could be used as early biomarkers of environmental quality.

Cytophysiological features of Posidonia oceanica as putative markers of environmental conditions

COZZA, Radiana;CHIAPPETTA, Adriana Ada Ceverista;BITONTI, Maria Beatrice;
2004

Abstract

Posidonia oceanica beds form one of the most important coastal ecosystems in the Mediterranean basin and represent a good indicator of the seawater quality, being strongly sensitive to human perturbations. The aim of the present study is to verify whether changes in cytophysiological features of this seagrass could mark early altered environmental conditions. In this context, we investigated in juvenile and intermediate leaves: (1) the presence and structure of phenolic compounds, due to their role in the defence response against biotic and abiotic stress; (2) the presence and distribution of cytokinins, because of their key role in leaf growth and senescence as well as in relation to their interaction in light signalling. Significant and measurable increases in the amount of phenols as well as changes in cytokinins distribution were detected in Posidonia leaves collected from meadows subjected to disturbed environmental conditions as compared to those of preserved ones. These results clearly indicated that these variables could be used as early biomarkers of environmental quality.
Posidonia oceanica; light acclimatation; cytokinin
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/146885
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