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From Abiotic Stress to UV Resilience: A Journey Through Plant Adaptation Research and Future Innovations in High-Altitude Ecosystems

Dr Kumari Sita, Assistant Professor, Botany, Khalsa College for Women, Amritsar

Zoom Link

Location : Online
Abstract: Grasping how plants adapt to diverse environmental stresses is vital in addressing the challenges posed by climate change. This presentation integrates my previous research on abiotic stress in plants, entitled “Evaluation of Lentil (Lens culinaris Medik.) germplasm for response to heat stress and investigation of mechanisms underlying heat sensitivity”. My future research will focus on the effects of climate change, specifically outlining a plan to explore UV radiation adaptation in high-altitude evergreen trees in the Himalayas.

Past Research on Abiotic Stress and Climate Change
Abiotic stress, including drought, and extreme temperatures, significantly impacts plant growth and productivity. My research has delved into the morpho-physiological, biochemical, reproductive function and molecular mechanisms underlying plant responses to these stresses. Through comprehensive research, we have explored the intricate interplay of morpho-physiological, biochemical, reproductive, and molecular mechanisms in plants' responses to these stresses. Our investigations reveal that lentil, a vital crop, exhibits optimal growth within a temperature range of 15 to 30°C but is highly sensitive to supra-optimal temperatures, particularly during its reproductive phase. Late-sown environments pose a significant risk of heat stress during critical stages like flowering and seed filling, leading to substantial yield losses. Key findings underscore the detrimental effects of heat stress on plant morphology, physiological functions, and biochemical pathways. Notably, heat stress triggers morphological abnormalities, membrane damage, inhibited photosynthetic efficiency, and alterations in vital cellular structures like stomata and trichomes. Furthermore, our research highlights the biochemical adaptations plants undergo under heat stress, including shifts in carbon fixation, carbohydrate metabolism, and heightened activity of antioxidative enzymes and osmolytes like proline and trehalose. Moreover, the reproductive and biomass consequences of heat stress are evident in reduced pollen viability and germination, accelerated phenological processes leading to flower and pod abortion, decreased seed size, and a substantial decline in overall yield. These findings underscore the urgency of addressing climate change-induced stressors to safeguard global food security and agricultural sustainability.

Meeting ID: 998 3662 2968
Passcode: 210215

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