The photosynthetic efficiency and carbohydrates responses of six edamame (Glycine max. L. Merrill) cultivars under drought stress

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Hlahla, Jeremiah M.
Mafa, Mpho S.
Van der Merwe, Rouxlene
Alexander, Orbett
Duvenhage, Mart-Mari
Kemp, Gabre
Moloi, Makoena J.
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Vegetable-type soybean, also known as edamame, was recently introduced to South Africa. However, there is lack of information on its responses to drought. The aim of this study was to investigate the photosynthetic efficiency and carbohydrates responses of six edamame cultivars under drought stress. Photosynthetic efficiency parameters, including chlorophyll fluorescence and stomatal conductance, were determined using non-invasive methods, while pigments were quantified spectrophotometrically. Non-structural carbohydrates were quantified using Megazyme kits. Structural carbohydrates were determined using Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). Drought stress significantly increased the Fv/Fm and PIabs of AGS429 and UVE17 at pod filling stage. Chlorophyll-a, which was most sensitive to drought, was significantly reduced in AGS429 and UVE17, but chlorophyll-b was relatively stable in all cultivars, except UVE17, which showed a significant decline at flowering stage. AGS354 and AGS429 also showed reduced chlorophyll-b at pod filling. UVE17 showed a significant reduction in carotenoid content and a substantial reduction in stomatal conductance during pod filling. Drought stress during pod filling resulted in a significant increase in the contents of trehalose, sucrose and starch, but glucose was decreased. Chlorophyll-a positively correlated with starch. The FTIR and XRD results suggest that the cell wall of UVE14, followed by UVE8 and AGS429, was the most intact during drought stress. It was concluded that carotenoids, stomatal conductance, starch and hemicellulose could be used as physiological/biochemical indicators of drought tolerance in edamame. This information expands our knowledge of the drought defense responses in edamame, and it is essential for the physiological and biochemical screening of drought tolerance.
Carbohydrates, Carotenoids, Drought, Edamame, Photosynthesis, Stomatal conductance, Hemicellulose, Lignin
Hlahla, J.M., Mafa, M.S., Van der Merwe, R., Alexander, O., Duvenhage, M.-M., Kemp, G., & Moloi, M.J. (2022). The Photosynthetic Efficiency and Carbohydrates Responses of Six Edamame (Glycine max. L. Merrill) Cultivars under Drought Stress. Plants, 11, 394. plants11030394