BER launches Environmental System Science Program. Visit our new website under construction!

U.S. Department of Energy Office of Biological and Environmental Research

BER Research Highlights


Wheat Growth Stimulated by High CO2
Published: February 27, 2002
Posted: March 08, 2002

Arnold Bloom (Department of Vegetable Crops, University of California, Davis) and coworkers published the paper "Nitrogen assimilation and growth of wheat under elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide" in the February 5 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (99:1730-1735). Bloom et al. grew wheat (the world's major food crop) in elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide, a product of energy production. When wheat was grown in an atmosphere containing twice-ambient carbon dioxide (levels that may be realized later in this century) their growth was stimulated as expected. But the researchers found that the form of nitrogen supplied to the plant roots significantly affected their response to elevated carbon dioxide. When wheat was supplied with ammonium nitrogen, the growth stimulation caused by elevated carbon dioxide was about twice the growth stimulation as when plants were given nitrate nitrogen. Bloom et al. discovered that elevated carbon dioxide inhibited the assimilation of nitrate nitrogen by wheat, but not nitrogen in the ammonium form. This may mean that major changes in fertilizer practices in agriculture will be needed in the future as carbon dioxide levels continue to increase. It may also mean that plants in natural ecosystems that prefer nitrate over ammonium as a nitrogen source, will be at a competitive disadvantage in the future because of inhibition of nitrate uptake due to elevated carbon dioxide. The research is supported by BER.

Contact: Jeffrey S. Amthor, SC-74, 3-2507
Topic Areas:

  • Research Area: Terrestrial Ecosystem Science

Division: SC-33.1 Earth and Environmental Sciences Division, BER
      (formerly SC-74 Environmental Sciences Division, OBER)

 

BER supports basic research and scientific user facilities to advance DOE missions in energy and environment. More about BER

Recent Highlights

Mar 23, 2021
Molecular Connections from Plants to Fungi to Ants
Lipids transfer energy and serve as an inter-kingdom communication tool in leaf-cutter ants&rsqu [more...]

Mar 19, 2021
Microbes Use Ancient Metabolism to Cycle Phosphorus
Microbial cycling of phosphorus through reduction-oxidation reactions is older and more widespre [more...]

Feb 22, 2021
Warming Soil Means Stronger Microbe Networks
Soil warming leads to more complex, larger, and more connected networks of microbes in those soi [more...]

Jan 27, 2021
Labeling the Thale Cress Metabolites
New data pipeline identifies metabolites following heavy isotope labeling.

Analysis [more...]

Aug 31, 2020
Novel Bacterial Clade Reveals Origin of Form I Rubisco
Objectives

  • All plant biomass is sourced from the carbon-fixing enzyme Rub [more...]

List all highlights (possible long download time)