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Physiological and biochemical characterization of Cork Oak Seedlings (Quercus suber.L) in Tunisia

By: Abdessamad Abdessalem, Saidi Ahmed, Chkioua Chaker, Ksontini Mustapha

Key Words: Cork oak, water stress, drought adaptation, physiological markers, biochemical markers.

J. Bio. Env. Sci. 8(1), 110-123, January 2016.


The cork oak is native forest species, the most represented in Tunisia and especially to Mogods Kroumirie. This species is considerable regression estimated at 1.22% of the area per year . Natural regeneration of cork oak seedlings and by rejecting strain encounters strong difficulties mainly because of the great mortality among seedlings. The failure of this regeneration is mainly caused by environmental conditions characteristic of the Mediterranean climate (long dry seasons with hot winds and high temperatures) and by predation and anthropogenic factors. Our study is to analyse the physiological and biochemical responses of seedlings of cork oak, subjected to moderate and severe water stress, which was conducted in nurseries in Tunis in twelve populations of cork oak. The various treatments are used to test the tolerance of the cork oak plants to water stress by biochemical markers such as proline, sugars and starch. The accumulation of sugars is characteristic of woody plants in difficult environmental conditions, as in our experimentation proline and starch can be regarded as a biochemical marker of stress to the cork oak.


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