Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(4), 7370-7390; doi:10.3390/ijms14047370

The Critical Role of Potassium in Plant Stress Response

Agricultural Ministry Key Lab of Plant Nutrition and Fertilization in Low-Middle Reaches of the Yangtze River, Jiangsu Key Lab and Engineering Center for Solid Organic Waste Utilization, Nanjing Agricultural University, No. 1 Weigang, Nanjing 210095, China
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 December 2012; in revised form: 23 February 2013 / Accepted: 21 March 2013 / Published: 2 April 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Abiotic and Biotic Stress Tolerance Mechanisms in Plants)
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Abstract: Agricultural production continues to be constrained by a number of biotic and abiotic factors that can reduce crop yield quantity and quality. Potassium (K) is an essential nutrient that affects most of the biochemical and physiological processes that influence plant growth and metabolism. It also contributes to the survival of plants exposed to various biotic and abiotic stresses. The following review focuses on the emerging role of K in defending against a number of biotic and abiotic stresses, including diseases, pests, drought, salinity, cold and frost and waterlogging. The availability of K and its effects on plant growth, anatomy, morphology and plant metabolism are discussed. The physiological and molecular mechanisms of K function in plant stress resistance are reviewed. This article also evaluates the potential for improving plant stress resistance by modifying K fertilizer inputs and highlights the future needs for research about the role of K in agriculture.
Keywords: biotic stress; abiotic stress; potassium; physiological and molecular mechanisms; plant resistance

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MDPI and ACS Style

Wang, M.; Zheng, Q.; Shen, Q.; Guo, S. The Critical Role of Potassium in Plant Stress Response. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 7370-7390.

AMA Style

Wang M, Zheng Q, Shen Q, Guo S. The Critical Role of Potassium in Plant Stress Response. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2013; 14(4):7370-7390.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Wang, Min; Zheng, Qingsong; Shen, Qirong; Guo, Shiwei. 2013. "The Critical Role of Potassium in Plant Stress Response." Int. J. Mol. Sci. 14, no. 4: 7370-7390.

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