Biomass and leaf acclimations to ultraviolet solar radiation in juvenile plants of Coffea arabica and C. Canephora

Wallace de Paula Bernado, Miroslava Rakocevic, Anne Reis Santos, Katherine Fraga Ruas, Danilo Força Baroni, Ana Cabrera Abraham, Saulo Pireda, Dhiego da Silva Oliveira, Maura Da Cunha, José Cochicho Ramalho, Eliemar Campostrini, Weverton Pereira Rodrigues

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11 Citations (Scopus)
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Despite the negative impacts of increased ultraviolet radiation intensity on plants, these organisms continue to grow and produce under the increased environmental UV levels. We hypothe-sized that ambient UV intensity can generate acclimations in plant growth, leaf morphology, and photochemical functioning in modern genotypes of Coffea arabica and C. canephora. Coffee plants were cultivated for ca. six months in a mini greenhouse under either near ambient (UVam) or reduced (UVre) ultraviolet regimes. At the plant scale, C. canephora was substantially more impacted by UVam when compared to C. arabica, investing more carbon in all juvenile plant components than under UVre. When subjected to UVam, both species showed anatomic adjustments at the leaf scale, such as increases in stomatal density in C. canephora, at the abaxial and adaxial cuticles in both species, and abaxial epidermal thickening in C. arabica, although without apparent impact on the thickness of palisade and spongy parenchyma. Surprisingly, C. arabica showed more efficient energy dissipation mechanism under UVam than C. canephora. UVam promoted elevated protective carotenoid content and a greater use of energy through photochemistry in both species, as reflected in the photochemical quenching increases. This was associated with an altered chlorophyll a/b ratio (significantly only in C. arabica) that likely promoted a greater capability to light energy capture. Therefore, UV levels promoted different modifications between the two Coffea sp. regarding plant biomass production and leaf morphology, including a few photochemical differences between species, suggesting that modifications at plant and leaf scale acted as an acclimation response to actual UV intensity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number640
Number of pages17
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2021


  • Fluorescence
  • Leaf anatomy
  • Leaf pigments
  • Plant growth
  • UV-A
  • UV-B


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