What is it about?

Plants adjust themselves to different light levels in many different ways, from the level of proteins and chloroplast to whole plant characteristics. By means of a meta-analysis, we analysed data from a large number of experiments (500) with many plant species (750). In the end, we derived generalised dose-response curves for 70 plant traits.

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Why is it important?

Dose-response curves provide us with a powerful way to summarise the direction, form and strength of plant responses to light. By calculating plasticity we could rank the traits in order of response. By compiling so many experiments we could also calculate an index for consistency (in what % of the experiments did the trait increase with increasing light) and the reliability (how sure are we about the response, given the number of data, species, and the variability across experiments).


This provides a much better quantitative understanding as to why some traits change with increasing light intensity whereas others remain constant, and can be used for modelers to implement more informed plant responses to the environment in their models.

Hendrik Poorter
Forschungszentrum Jülich

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: A meta‐analysis of plant responses to light intensity for 70 traits ranging from molecules to whole plant performance, New Phytologist, April 2019, Wiley, DOI: 10.1111/nph.15754.
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