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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

An investigation of the seasonal pattern of mannitol content in deciduous and evergreen species of the oleaceae growing in northern Sicily.

In several species of the Oleaceae, mannitol, already present at considerable levels, accumulates in response to stress. This family comprises both deciduous and evergreen species, and we investigated the role of mannitol in deciduous malacophyll and evergreen sclerophyll species growing under the same conditions in the field. The relationship between mannitol content and changes in rainfall or temperature was also studied. The mannitol content of leaves of Fraxinus ornus L., F. angustifolia Vahl., Olea europaea L. and Phillyrea media L. was determined by gas chromatography. Leaf samples were collected once a month for 1 year. In the two ash species, the seasonal pattern of mannitol content appeared the same: a gradual increase in spring, peaking in summer, followed by a gradual decrease. The mannitol content was similar in both species, ranging between 260 and 720 micromol g(-1) d. wt. The seasonal pattern of mannitol content in Olea and Phillyrea was similar for both species, but unlike that of Fraxinus did not show a summer peak. Rainfall was negatively correlated with the seasonal increase of mannitol content in ash. Mannitol content increased gradually during drought, reaching a maximum value at the end of the dry season. Temperature did not have a direct influence on mannitol content. In Olea and Phillyrea, variations in mannitol content were poorly correlated with rainfall or temperature, indicating that mannitol does not have a primary role in the response of these species to the hot, dry summer conditions.[1]


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