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Applications of ion chromatography to study pollution effects on forest trees

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Advanced Ion Chromatography. 2: 299-309.


Air pollution and acidic deposition can influence forest tree growth and survival by causing ionic imbalances in the rooting zone. Altered nutrient status suppresses tree growth and weakens its immune system. Internal infections spread more quickly in response to weakened tree defenses. As adverse conditions persist, many trees die and the survivors are less healthy. Changes in concentrations and composition of ions within tree tissues are useful indicators of changes in vital processes affecting tree growth and survival. Ion chromatography is a useful method for measuring the concentration and composition of ions in the issue extracts. Samples of tree tissues were extracted and the extracts analyzed for Mg2+, Mn2+, Fe2+, Cu2+, Co2+, Ni2+, Cd2+, Pb2+, Al3+, Cl-, NO3-, SO42-, PO43-, acetate, formate, oxalate, and malate by various methods. Results of extract analysis confirm the usefulness of ion chromatography in studies of induced nutrient deficiencies in fine-root tip tissue, of altered uptake of exchangeable cations over time in dated wood, and of immune response in stemwood.


Shortle, Walter C.; Minocha, Rakesh. 1990. Applications of ion chromatography to study pollution effects on forest trees. Advanced Ion Chromatography. 2: 299-309.

Last updated on: December 11, 2007