[Truncated abstract] Background and aims: Salinity impedes agricultural productivity across large areas of the arable land on earth, and much scientific research aims to discover strategies for boosting crop and forage production on saline land. This thesis aims to deepen the scientific understanding of the mitochondrial and respiratory response to salt treatment, and investigate how mitochondrial properties vary between wheat varieties with contrasting salinity tolerance. These results could guide future crop breeding efforts, by identifying specific wheat genes as targets for enhancing salinity tolerance processes. Experimental strategies: Wheat plants were grown under laboratory conditions and subjected to either control or NaCl treatment. The approach used to analyse mitochondrial salinity responses involved integrating data from proteomics, physiology and biochemistry. The proteomic techniques of 2D gels and mass spectrometry were employed to investigate which mitochondrial proteins differed in abundance between control versus stress conditions, and also which mitochondrial proteins differ in abundance between tolerant versus sensitive varieties. Physiological techniques were used to analyse how photosynthetic and respiratory rates responded to NaCl, and biochemical techniques were used to investigate how rates of mitochondrial oxygen consumption differed between mitochondria isolated from control versus salt treated plants. Also, this thesis contains a detailed investigation into how the direct application of NaCl to isolated mitochondria affects oxygen consumption rates across different pathways of mitochondrial electron transport.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Publication status||Unpublished - 2013|