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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Factors to Consider in Artificial Freeze Tests

Authors
item Gusta, L. - UNIV/SASKATCHEWAN
item Wisniewski, Michael
item Nesbitt, N. - UNIV/SASKATCHEWAN
item Tanino, K. - UNIV/SASKATCHEWAN

Submitted to: International Horticultural Congress
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 1, 2003
Publication Date: July 15, 2003
Citation: Gusta, L.V., Wisniewski, M.E., Nesbitt, N.T., Tanino, K.T. 2003. Factors to consider in artificial freeze tests. International Horticultural Congress. Acta Horticulture 618 (2003). pgs. 493-507.

Technical Abstract: While it may not be totally possible, an artificial freeze test should duplicate the type of stress encountered in nature. For example, a frost of -3 C to -7 C for 1 to 2 hours results in a different type of stress encountered by a winter cereal or a tree exposed to sub-zero temperature for several months. In spite of the recent popularity of the electrolyte leakage test there have been few attempts to correlate this with viability, as determined by regrowth. Does a 10% difference in ion leakage between the control and transgenic plants really translate into a significant biological difference? As demonstrated in the present report, infrared video thermography clearly demonstrates how freezing occurs in plants at the organ or tissue level. This technique has given us many insights not previously possible by other means such as thermocouples, thermistors, etc. Hopefully, in the near future, this technology will be able to be utilized to visualize freezing at the cellular level. This would greatly improve our understanding of how various changes in gene expression and cell structure contribute to increased freezing tolerance.

Last Modified: 8/29/2014
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