Phenolic glycosides are effective reactive oxygen scavengers and peroxidase substrates, suggesting that compounds in addition to ascorbate may have functional importance in defence responses against ozone (O(3)), especially in the leaf apoplast. The apoplastic concentrations of ascorbic acid (AA) and phenolic glycosides in Arabidopsis thaliana L. Col-0 wild-type plants were determined following exposure to a range of O(3) concentrations (5, 125 or 175 nL L(-1)) in controlled environment chambers. AA in leaf apoplast extracts was almost entirely oxidized in all treatments, suggesting that O(3) scavenging by direct reactions with reduced AA was very limited. In regard to phenolics, O(3) stimulated transcription of numerous phenylpropanoid pathway genes and increased the apoplastic concentration of sinapoyl malate. However, modelling of O(3) scavenging in the apoplast indicated that sinapoyl malate concentrations were too low to be effective protectants. Furthermore, null mutants for sinapoyl esters (fah1-7), kaempferol glycosides (tt4-1) and the double mutant (tt4-1/fah1-7) were equally sensitive to chronic O(3) as Ler-0 wild-type plants. These results indicate that current understanding of O(3) defence schemes deserves reassessment as mechanisms other than direct scavenging of O(3) by extracellular AA and antioxidant activity of some phenolics may predominate in some plant species.
Published 2012. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.