Plant physiology

lbio1240  2021-2022  Louvain-la-Neuve

Plant physiology
4.00 credits
40.0 h + 15.0 h

The prerequisite(s) for this Teaching Unit (Unité d’enseignement – UE) for the programmes/courses that offer this Teaching Unit are specified at the end of this sheet.
Main themes
Plant water relationships are reviewed, successively considering notions of water potential and its components, water transport in the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum and stomatal regulation. The bases of mineral nutrition are studied : interaction between the root system and the soil, notion and function of essential elements, cellular and transcellular transports. The structure of the photosynthetic apparatus and the light reactions of photosynthesis are specified. The carbon reactions (light-independent reactions) are explained integrating the gas exchange and water use efficiency problematics. Specificities of plant respiration are viewed. Assimilates transport is detailed: phloem loading and unloading, assimilate allocation and partitioning, sink to source relationships. The energetic balance resulting from the photosynthetic and respiratory activities is integrated in an eco-physiological viewpoint in relationship with the canopy structure, the impact of light intensity and the influence of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. The 5 classical plant hormones, namely auxins, gibberellins, cytokinins, ethylene and abscissic acid, are studied in detail. The specific functions of other molecules involved in plant growth and development, but also in plant defence against biotic invaders, are viewed. The major role of photoperiodism in plant development is analysed in depth using the control of floral transition as an example. Basic concepts on photomorphogenesis and endogenous biological rhythms are overviewed as well as the biochemical and physiological basis of vernalization and bud dormancy. The mechanisms of resistance of plants to environmental constraints are schematically presented.
Learning outcomes

At the end of this learning unit, the student is able to :

1 To give students precise notions to apprehend the specificities of plant functioning and to master the complex problematics of processes governing growth, development and adaptation to the environment. To initiate students to methodologies used in physiology of the whole plant.
Faculty or entity

Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Learning outcomes
Master [120] in History of Art and Archaeology : General

Minor in Biology

Minor in Scientific Culture

Bachelor in Biology

Master [120] in Biochemistry and Molecular and Cell Biology