Can elevated CO<inf>2</inf> affect secondary metabolism and ecosystem function?

Josep Peñuelas, Marc Estiarte

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    268 Citations (Scopus)


    It has generally been assumed that increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations will increase plant carbon-based secondary or structural compounds concentrations. These changes may have far-reaching consequences for herbivory and plant litter decomposition. Recent experimental results provide evidence of increases in concentrations of soluble phenolics and condensed tannins but not in lignin, structural polysaccharides or terpenes. They also show significant effects of these plant chemical changes on herbivores and little or any effects on decomposition. However, there is no consistent evidence of any of these effects at the complex long-term ecosystem level.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)20-24
    JournalTrends in Ecology and Evolution
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1998


    Dive into the research topics of 'Can elevated CO<inf>2</inf> affect secondary metabolism and ecosystem function?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this