Submitted to: Environment Control in Biology
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: January 15, 2002
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Many important agronomics species grown in temperate climates have been imported form warmer tropical and subtropical habitats. Unlike native temperate climate species, most plants from warm climate evolutionary origins have very little capacity to acclimate to cool much less freezing temperatures. Because the cool temperature sensitivity of these crops plays a central role in determining the growing range as well as annual variations in their economic success, there is intense interest in discovering the mechanistic basis for low temperature sensitivity. It is hoped that by defining the primary chilling-induced lesions that cause the metabolic dysfunctions in warm climate plants that it will be possible to devise strategies to minimize the sensitivity. However, the relevant physiological bases of chilling sensitivity depends critically on the seasonal climatic conditions of the target growing region, whether the low temperature episodes occur at night or in the light, as well as on the species of warm climate plant under consideration. These issues are considered in the context of what is currently understood about the underlying basis of chilling sensitivity.