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Gender dimorphism in Corema album across its biogeographical area and implications under a scenario of extreme drought events

Title data

Díaz-Barradas, Mari Cruz ; Zunzunegui, María ; Correia, Otilia ; Ain-Lhout, Fátima ; Esquivias, Mari Paz ; Álvarez-Cansino, Leonor:
Gender dimorphism in Corema album across its biogeographical area and implications under a scenario of extreme drought events.
In: Environmental and Experimental Botany. Vol. 155 (2018) . - pp. 609-618.
ISSN 0098-8472
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envexpbot.2018.08.011

Abstract in another language

In dioecious species, traits may have evolved because of significantly different resource demands associated with male versus female sexual reproduction. It is generally assumed that females have higher reproductive costs, thereafter in long-lived species, males often exceed females in vigour and suffer lower physiological limitations under stress. However, large-scale studies of gender dimorphism and the link between survival and physiological responses and compensation mechanisms are still lacking. In this study, we compared canopy performance, photochemical efficiency, leaf water potential, Δ13C, leaf nitrogen content and δ15N in both genders of the dioecious species Corema album (Ericaceae) across all the species’ biogeographical distribution. This area corresponds to a wide climatic gradient, from temperate and humid to Mediterranean, across the Atlantic coast of the Iberian Peninsula.Our results evidenced that the species responds to the bioclimatic gradient, and most variables were significantly correlated with annual rainfall and bioclimatic indices, although gender dimorphism was only manifested in Δ13C and in leaf water potential at the peak of the drought season. Female plants have significantly higher values of Δ13C, which could be attributed to lower water use efficiency; however, male plants presented more negative leaf water potentials than females, especially in the populations with the warmest and most arid climate.We concluded that C. album populations adjust to the climatic gradient at different hierarchical scales, from physiological instantaneous to time-integrated traits, with gender dimorphism only occurring in sub-optimal environments The absence of morphological differences between genders and the maintenance of a less negative water potential in females in the dry period in southern more arid populations, suggests the existence of compensatory mechanisms at underground level.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Additional notes: BAYCEER151786
Institutions of the University: Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Professor Plant Ecology
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science
Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2020 14:20
Last Modified: 03 Feb 2020 14:20
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/53924