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Bosque (Valdivia)

versión On-line ISSN 0717-9200


RODRIGUEZ-CALCERRADA, Jesús; SALOMON, Roberto  y  GIL, Luis. Transport and recycling of CO2 inside trees: factors complicating the estimation of wood respiration through CO2 radial efflux. Bosque (Valdivia) [online]. 2015, vol.36, n.1, pp.5-14. ISSN 0717-9200.

Tree trunks and roots have a variable and often important proportion of live cells. Respiration provides energy and carbon skeletons required by these living cells for their maintenance and proliferation. In the process of respiration, soluble sugars previously synthesized by leaves and young stems are oxidized and carbon dioxide (CO2) is produced as a byproduct. For this reason, it has been amply considered that rates of radial CO2 efflux from trunks and stems are equivalent to rates of respiration. However, it has been observed that the CO2 produced in respiration does not immediately or fully diffuse out to the atmosphere. Thus, even if in some circumstances radial CO2 efflux is a good surrogate of wood respiration, we must not consider both variables as equivalent. In 2008, Teskey et al. reviewed the main factors affecting the concentration, mobility and emission of CO2 in tree stems, namely: corticular photosynthesis, resistance of anatomical elements to radial CO2 diffusion, and solubility and transport of CO2 in xylem sap. Here we update this topic with recent findings reported in literature and in Spanish language. With this work we intend to engage a broader audience in the investigation of wood CO2 efflux and respiration, an understudied topic of central importance for modeling the carbon balance of forest ecosystems and the atmospheric CO2 concentration in the future.

Palabras clave : carbon flux; respiratory metabolism; carbon pool; forest decline; CO2 internal transport.

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