Upon completion of this course, students will be able:
1. To understand key concepts involved in crucial plant processes.
2. To realize the relationship between plant morphology and plant function.
3. To comprehend the environmental influence on plant growth and consequently on crop production.
4. To manage, protect and cultivate plants by knowing how a plant actually grows up.
5. To be fully informed of the last biotechnological advances regarding plant function.
Course Content (Syllabus)
1. Introduction to plant physiology: Phylogenetics, plant classification.
2. Principles of cell physiology, totipotency and applications, homeostatic mechanisms.
3. Photosynthesis: The physical reactions, the role of pigments.
4. Carbon reactions in photosynthesis. Photorespiration. C3, C4, CAM and intermediate photosynthetic cycles (alternative pathways).
5. Ecological aspects of photosynthesis and plant metabolism. Effects of atmospheric CO2 and light.
6. Ecological aspects of photosynthesis and plant metabolism. Effects of water and temperature.
8. Nitrogen: Metabolism and nitrogen fixation.
9. Ionic relationships: Mineral nutrition.
10. Water relations: Water potentials, pathways and mechanisms of water movement.
11. Plant development: Plant hormones. Biomolecules with hormonal activity.
12. Tropisms, periodisms, uptake and signal transduction, physiology of senescence.
13. Secondary metabolites: Introductory concepts, role and metabolism.
1. Estimating chlorophyll: Chlorophyll content measurement in situ using a portable chlorophyll-meter. Spectrophotometric determination of leaf chlorophyll a and b.
2.Photosynthesis I: Leaf fluoresence measurements for determining leaf quantum yield (natural conditions and in dark). Fluorescence induction curves.
3.Photosynthesis II: Carbon assimilation. Leaf carbon exchange measurements for determining net photosynthesis.
4.Water relations. Transpiration measurements through stomatal conductance monitoring.
5.Determination of leaf area index of the whole foliage in situ and of individual leaves in the laboratory-plant productivity determination.
6.Plant physiological responses under stress conditions: Determination of chlorophyll content, quantum yield, net photosynthesis, transpiration and leaf area index in plants subjected to salinity and to water stress.
plant physiology, photosynthesis, water relations, plant hormones, nitrogen fixation, secondary metabolism, stress