Triazine resistance in Senecio vulgaris parental and nearly isonuclear backcrossed biotypes is correlated with reduced productivity

William B. McCloskey, Jodie S. Holt

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40 Scopus citations


Isonuclear triazine-susceptible and triazine-resistant Senecio vulgaris L. biotypes were developed by making reciprocal crosses between susceptible and resistant biotypes to obtain F1 hybrids and backcrossing the hybrids to the appropriate pollen parent. The electrophoretic isozyme patterns of the enzyme aconitase obtained from leaf extracts of triazine-susceptible parental (S) and backcrossed (S×RBC6) biotypes, and triazine-resistant parental (R) and backcrossed (R×SBC6) biotypes verified that the biotypes had the expected nuclear genomes. Atrazine inhibition of chloroplast whole chain electron transport from water to methyl viologen was measured to verify susceptibility or resistance to triazine herbicides. The photosynthetic rate and biomass accumulation of greenhouse grown susceptible and resistant S. vulgaris biotypes were measured 28, 35, 42, 50, 57, and 64 days after planting to determine the effect of altered chloroplast function. S and S×RBC6 biotypes had CO2 assimilation rates of 16.2 and 16.6 micromoles CO2 per square meter per second, respectively, and I50 values (herbicide concentration producing 50% inhibition) of about 0.49 micromolar atrazine. The corresponding values for the R and R×SBC6 biotypes were 14.7 and 14.6 micromoles CO2 per square meter per second with I50 values of 65.0 micromolar atrazine. The S biotype was larger and more productive than the R biotype at all harvests. At the harvest 57 days after planting, mean shoot dry weight was 33.2 and 8.7 grams for the S and R biotypes, respectively. The growth effect associated with chloroplast differences was shown in comparisons of the S biotype with the R×SBc6 biotype and of the S×RBC6 biotype with the R biotype. The R×SBc6 biotype had 72% of the shoot dry weight of the S biotype while the R biotype had 55% of the shoot dry weight of the S×RBc6 biotype. The R×SBc6 and R biotypes produced about 73 and 62% of the leaf area of the S and S×RBC6 biotypes, respectively. Relative growth rate was similar in biotypes with the same nuclear genome; however, instantaneous unit leaf rate was higher in the S compared to the R×SBC6 biotype and in the S×RBC6 compared to the R biotype. At 57 days after planting, the cumulative leaf area duration (i.e. photosynthetic opportunity) of the R×SBC6 and R biotypes was 86 and 66% of that of the S and S×RBC6 biotypes, respectively. Our data indicate that impaired chloroplast function in triazine resistant S. vulgaris biotypes limits growth and productivity at the whole plant level.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)954-962
Number of pages9
JournalPlant physiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science


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