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Faculty and Staff
CHEN Yajun
Academic title:
Postal Code:
Subject categories:
Plant Ecology
Mailing Address:
XTBG, Menglun, Mengla, 666303, Yunnan, China



Name:  Yajun Chen, Male, Ph.D. Professor 

Address: Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Menglun Town, Mengla, Yunnan 666303, China  

Phone: +86-691-8713195  

Email: chenyj@xtbg.org.cn  


Research interests:  

The drought-induced tree mortality. 

Plant hydraulic architecture 

The water relations of tropical woody plant (trees & lianas);  

The community ecology of lianas (woody climbers);  


  •  NSFC project. Water relations of tropical Parashorea chinensis rainforests and their response to extreme drought events (NSFC No. 32071735). 2021/01-2024/12; Hoster;
  •  CAS ‘Light of West China’ Program. 2021/01 -2024/12; Hoster;
  •  NSFC-TRF joint project. The response of typical forests to climate change and climate variability along a latitudinal gradient: a case study on E101 longitude dynamic plots belt. (NSFC No. 41861144016); 2019/01-2021/12; Hoster;
  •  NSFC-DFG joint project. The frequency and mechanisms behind drought-induced xylem hydraulic failure in woody angiosperms from temperate to tropical biomes. (NSFC No. 3181101259, Hoster: Prof. Cao Kunfang); 2019/01-2021/12; sub-project Hoster;
  •  NSFC project: The ecophysiological mechanisms of drought-induced tree mortality: a case study from hot-dry savanna valley, Southwest China (NSFC No. 31570406), 2016/01-2019/12 Hoster;
  •  The talents of Academic and technical leader of Yunnan2018/01-2020/12; Hoster;
  •  CAS 135 Program Subtopic projectXTBG-T01, The response of typical forests to climate change and climate variability along a latitudinal gradient: a case study on E101 longitude dynamic plots belt. 2017/01-2020/12; Hoster;
  • CAS 135 Program Subtopic project XTBG-F05. The water relations of tropical tree and lianas in lowland Dipterocarp forests. 2017/01-2020/12; Hoster;
  •  Youth Innovation Promotion Association, CAS (No. 2016351), 2016/01-2019/12 Hoster;
  •  CAS ‘Light of West China’ Program, 2016/01-2018/12, Hoster;
  •  The water use strategies of tropical lianas and cooccurring trees. (NSFC: No. 31100291), 2012/01-2014/12, Hoster.

  Plant ecology



*correspondence author#co-first author 

Peer-reviewed journal 

1.        Chen YJ, Choat B, Sterck F*, Maenpuen P, Katabuchi M, Zhang SB, Tomlinson KW, Oliveira RS, Zhang YJ, Shen JX, Cao KF, Jansen S Hydraulic prediction of drought-induced plant dieback and top-kill depends on leaf habit and growth form. Ecology Letters 2021. 24:2350-2363.Cover Story ( DOI:10.1111/ele.13856) 

2.        Chen YJ#,*, Maenpuen P #, Zhang YJ*, Barai K, Katabuchi M, Gao H, Sasiwimol K, Tao LB, Zhang JL*. Quantifying vulnerability to embolism in tropical trees and lianas using five methods: Can discrepancies be explained by xylem structural traits? New Phytologist. 2021, 229(2):805-819. #contributed equally 

3.        Shen JX, Zhang YJ*, Maenpuen P, Zhang SB, Zhang L, Yang L, Tao LB, Yan PY, Zhang ZM, Li SQ, Yuan X, Kongjarat W, Kaewkamol S, Tinprabat P, Chen YJ*.Response of four evergreen savanna shrubs to an incidence of extreme drought: High embolism resistance, branch shedding, and maintenance of nonstructural carbohydrates. Tree Physiolology 2021, Online  DOI:10.1093/treephys/tpab150/6433008 

4.        Siddiq Z, Chen YJ, Cao KF. Water flux responses of tropical trees and lianas to foliage loss caused by a heavy hailstorm. Ecohydrology 2021, e2288. (DOI:  10.1002/eco.2288) 

5.        Zhang KY#, Yang D#, Zhang YB#, Ellsworth DS, Xu K, Zhang YP, Chen YJ, He F, Zhang JL*. Differentiation in stem and leaf traits among sympatric lianas, scandent shrubs and trees in a subalpine cold temperate forest. Tree Physiolology 2021, 41(11): 1992-2003 (Doi:10.1093/treephys/tpab049) #contributed equally 

6.        Bai XL, Liu Q, Mohandass D, Cao M, Wen HD, Chen YJ, Gupta SK, Lin LX, Zhang JL*. Spatial autocorrelation shapes liana distribution better than topography and host tree properties in a subtropical evergreen broadleaved forest in SW China. Biotropica 2021, Accepted. 

7.        Tor-ngern P, Chart-asa C, Chanthorn W, Rodtassana C, Yampum S, Unawong W, Nathalang A, Brockelman W, Srinoppawan K, Chen YJ, Hasselquist NJ. Variation of leaf-level gas exchange rates and leaf functional traits of dominant trees across three successional stages in a Southeast Asian tropical forest. Forest Ecology and Management 2021, 489:119101 

8.        Surayothee W, Buajan S, Fu PL, Pumijumnong N, Fan ZX, Panthi S, Finnegan PM, Zhang YJ, Chen YJ, Tor-ngern P, et al. 2021. Growth-climate relationships and long-term growth trends of the tropical forest tree Choerospondias axillaris (Anacardiaceous) in East-central Thailand. Forests 2021, 12. 1655. (https://doi.org/10.3390/ f12121655) 

9.        Tan FS, Song HQ, Fu PL, Chen YJ, Siddiq Z,Cao KF, Zhu SD.Hydraulic safety margins of co-occurring woody plants in a tropical karst forest experiencing frequent extreme droughts Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 2020, 292–293, 108107 

10.    Zhang L, Chen YJ*, Hao GY, Ma KP*, Bongers F, Sterck FJ. Conifer and broadleaved trees differ in branch allometry but maintain similar functional balances Tree Physiology 2020, 40: 511-519. 

11.    Gao H, Chen YJ*, Zhang YJ, Maenpuen P, Lv S, Zhang JL*. Vessel length determination using silicone and air injection: Are there artifacts? Tree Physiology 2019, 39: 1783-1791. 

12.    Zhang L, Chen YJ*, Ma KP, Bongers F, Sterck FJ. Fully exposed canopy branches in co-existing trees and lianas lack trade-offs between hydraulic conductivity, hydraulic safety and mechanical safety and are much alike in hydraulic functions in a tropical forest. Tree Physiology 2019, 39: 1713-1724 

13.    Zheng YL*, Burns JH, Liao ZY, Li YP, Yang J, Chen YJ, Zhang JL, Zheng YG Species composition, functional and phylogenetic distances correlate with success of invasive Chromolaena odorata in an experimental test. Ecology Letters 2018, 21:1211-1220. 

14.    Zhu SD*, Chen YJ, Fu PL, Cao KF*. Leaf turgor loss point is correlated with drought tolerance and leaf carbon economics traits. Tree Physiology, 2018, 38, 658-663 

15.    Siddiq# Z, Chen YJ#, Zhang YJ, Zhang JL, Cao Cao KF* More sensitive response of crown conductance to VPD and larger water consumption in tropical evergreen than in deciduous broadleaf timber trees. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology#contributed equally2017, 247399-407  

16.    Zhu SD#, Chen YJ#, Fu PL, Cao KF* Different hydraulic traits of woody plants from tropical forests with contrasting soil water availability. Tree Physiology 2017, 37, 1469–1477#contributed equally 

17.    Chen YJ, Schnitzer S, Zhang YJ, Fan, ZX, Goldstein G; Tomlinson, Lin H, Zhang JL*, Cao KF*. Physiological regulation and efficient xylem water transport regulate diurnal water and carbon balances of tropical lianas. Functional Ecology 2017, 31306-317 

18.    Lin H, Chen YJ, Zhang HL, Fu PL, Fan ZX. 2017 Stronger cooling effects of transpiration and morphology of the plants from a hot dry habitat than from a hot wet habitat Functional Ecology 2017, 31: 2202–2211. 

19.    Lin H, Chen YJ, Song QH, Fu PL, Cleverly J, Magliulo V, Law BE, Gough CM, Hortnagl LJ, et al. Quantifying deforestation and forest degradation with thermal response Science of The Total Environment 2017, 607-608:1286-1292 

20.    Li YP, Feng YL, Kang ZL, Zheng YL, Zhang JL, Chen YJ. Changes in soil microbial communities due to biological invasions can reduce allelopathic effects. Journal of Applied Ecology 2017. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2664.12878 

21.    Zhao WL, Chen YJ,  Brodribb T, Cao KF*. Weak coordination between vein and stomatal densities in 105 angiosperm tree species along altitudinal gradients in Southwest China. Functional Plant Biology, 2016. 43,1126-1133.  

22.    Chen YJ*, Bongers F, Tomlinson K, Fan ZX, Lin H, Zhang SB, Zheng YL, Li YP, Cao KF*, Zhang JL. Time lags between crown and basal sap flows in tropical lianas and co-occurring trees. Tree Physiology, 2016, 36, 736-747.  

23.    Chen YJ*, Cao KF, Schnitzer SA, Fan ZX, Zhang JL & Bongers F Water-use advantage for lianas over trees in tropical seasonal forests. New Phytologist, 2015, 205, 128-136.  

24.    Zhu SD#, Chen YJ#, Cao KF & Ye Q*. Interspecific variation in branch and leaf traits among three Syzygium tree species from different successional tropical forests. Functional Plant Biology, 2015, 42, 423–432#contributed equally 

25.    Chen YJ, Bongers F, Zhang JL, Liu JY & Cao KF*. Different biomechanical design and ecophysiological strategies in juveniles of two liana species with contrasting growth habit. American Journal of Botany, 2014, 101, 925-934.  

26.    Chen YJ, F. Bongers, K.F. Cao & Cai ZQ*. Above- and below-ground competition in high and low irradiance: tree seedling responses to a competing liana Byttneria grandifolia. Journal of Tropical Ecology, 2008, 24, 517–524.  

27.    Cai ZQ*, Chen YJ & Bongers F Seasonal changes in photosynthesis and growth of Zizyphus attopensis seedlings in three contrasting microhabitats in a tropical seasonal rain forest. Tree Physiology, 2007, 27, 827-836.  

28.    Cai ZQ, Chen YJ, Guo YH & Cao KF*. Responses of two field-grown coffee species to drought and re-hydration. Photosynthetica, 2005, 43, 187-193. 

29.    Zhang JL*, Zhang SB, Chen YJ & Poorter L. Nutrient resorption is associated with leaf vein density and growth performance of dipterocarp tree species. Journal of Ecology, 2015, 103, 541–549. 

30.    Li YP, Feng, YL*, Chen YJ and Tian YH. Soil microbes alleviates allelopathy of invasive plants. Science Bulletin, 2015, 60(12): 1083-1091. 

31.    Li S, Zhang YJ, L Sack, Scoffoni C, Ishida A, Chen YJ & Cao KF*. The heterogeneity and spatial patterning of structure and physiology across the leaf surface in giant leaves of Alocasia macrorrhiza. Plos One 2013, 8, e66016. 

32.    Cai ZQ*, Schnitzer SA, Wen B, Chen YJ & Bongers F. Liana diversity and abundance in three tropical forests in Xishuangbanna, SW China. Journal of Tropical Forest Science, 2009, 21, 252-264. 

33.    Zheng YLFeng YLValiente-Banuet ALi YPLiao ZY Zhang, JL& Chen YJ. Are invasive plants more competitive than native conspecifics? Patterns vary with competitors. Scientific Reports20155. 

34.    Cao K, Fu PL, Chen YJ, Jiang YJ, Zhu SD. 2014. Implications of the ecophysiological adaptation of plants on tropical karst habitats for the ecological restoration of desertified rocky lands in southern China. Scientia Sinica Vitae. (Chinese journal with English abstract). 

35.    Ding LZ, Chen YJ, Zhang JL. Leaf traits and their associations among liana species in tropical rainforest. Plant Science Journal. 2014. (Chinese journal with English abstract). 

36.    Chen YJ, Cao KF, and Cai ZQ. Comparison of the eco-physiological characteristics between seedlings of lianas and trees under two light irradiances. Acta Phytoecologica Sinica, 2008, 32:639-647. (Chinese journal with English abstract) 

37.    Chen YJZhang JL, Cao KF 2008 Morphological, Growth and Photosynthetic Traits of Two Liana Species in Response to Different Light and Soil Nutrients. Chinese Bulletin of Botany, 25:185-194. (Chinese journal with English abstract) 

38.    Chen YJ, Wen B. Liana diversity and abundance of a tropical montane rainforest in Mengsong, Southern Yunnan, China. Guihaia, 2008, 8: 67-72. (Chinese journal with English abstract) 

39.    Chen YJ, Chen JW, Cai ZQ. Lianas and Their Functions in Tropical Forests, Chinese Bulletin of Botany, 2008, 24:240-249. (Chinese journal with English abstract) 

40.    Chen YJZhu SD; Cao KF. Comparison of the eco-physiological characteristics between seedlings of lianas and trees under two light irradiances. Acta Ecologica Sinica, 2008, 28: 6034-6042. (Chinese journal with English abstract) 

41.    Zhang Q, Chen JW, Chen YJ, Cao KF, Li BG. Photosynthetic Induction in Two Fern Species with Different Eco-types in Xishuangbanna Tropical Rainforest. Chinese Bulletin of Botany 2008, 25: 673-679. (Chinese journal with English abstract)  

Book chapter 

1.        Campanello PIManzané EVillagra MZhang YJPanizza AMFrancescantonio DDRodriguez SAChen YJSantiago LGoldstein GCarbon Allocation and Water Relations of Lianas Versus Trees Carbon Allocation and Water Relations of Lianas Versus TreesTropical Tree Physiology: Adaptations and Responses in a Changing Environment, Guillermo Goldstein, Louis S Santiago, Springer International Publishing, pp 103-124  

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