Is carbon isotope composition a relevant ecophysiological indicator of genetic variation in water use efficiency of rubber trees?

Abstract : The rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) plantations extend to non-traditional area in Thailand where dryer conditions has been reported to impair the growth of rubber trees and latex production. Physiological parameters helpful for breeding adapted genotypes are required, such as water use efficiency (WUE). Carbon isotope discrimination is widely used as a proxy for WUE that can easily be used for selection and breeding programs for drought tolerance. Leaf [delta]13C and leaf gas exchange were measured on young saplings of 10 rubber clones growing in pot in a common garden. The range of leaf [delta]13C among 10 clones was narrow and the correlation between [delta]13C and WUEi was significant under high vapour pressure deficit only, which means the prediction of WUE by [delta]13C would have low precision. There were large [delta]13C variations among the genotypes at all seasons in a collection of 49 wild genotypes of rubber in Northeastern Thailand. [delta]13C was rather stable with a good correlation between rainy and dry season. The genetic variability of [delta]13C is promising for breeding if a good correlation between [delta]13C of leaf and WUE can be established. The lack of correlation between [delta]13C of latex ([delta]13C-L) and of leaf soluble compounds ([delta]13C-S) collected from tapped and untapped 20 year-old rubber trees suggests that recent photosynthates are mixed in the large pool of stored carbohydrates that are involved in latex regeneration after tapping. Thus [delta]13C of latex is not a relevant indicator of WUE of rubber trees
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Nicha Kanpanon. Is carbon isotope composition a relevant ecophysiological indicator of genetic variation in water use efficiency of rubber trees?. Agricultural sciences. Université de Lorraine, 2015. English. ⟨NNT : 2015LORR0240⟩. ⟨tel-01754504⟩

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