Publications by authors named "Parvaiz Ahmad"

159 Publications

Zinc oxide nanoparticles alleviates the adverse effects of cadmium stress on Oryza sativa via modulation of the photosynthesis and antioxidant defense system.

Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2021 Sep 9;220:112401. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Department of Botany, S.P. College, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India. Electronic address:

Cadmium (Cd) is a trace element causing severe toxicity symptoms in plants, besides posing hazardous fitness issue due to its buildup in the human body through food chain. Nanoparticles (NPs) are recently employed as a novel strategy to directly ameliorate the Cd stress and acted as nano-fertilizers. The intend of the current study was to explore the effects of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs; 50 mg/L) on plant growth, photosynthetic activity, elemental status and antioxidant activity in Oryza sativa (rice) under Cd (0.8 mM) stress. To this end, the rice plants are treated by Cd stress at 15 days after sowing (DAS), and the treatment was given directly into the soil. Supply of ZnO-NPs as foliar spray was given for five consecutive days from 30 to 35 DAS, and sampling was done at 45 DAS. However, rice plants supplemented with ZnO-NPs under the Cd toxicity revealed significantly increased shoot length (SL; 34.0%), root fresh weight (RFW; 30.0%), shoot dry weight (SDW; 23.07%), and root dry weight (RDW; 12.24%). Moreover, the ZnO-NPs supplement has also positive effects on photosynthesis related parameters, SPAD value (40%), chloroplast structure, and qualitatively high fluorescence observed by confocal microscopy even under Cd stress. ZnO-NPs also substantially prevented the increases of hydrogen peroxide (HO) and malondialdehyde (MDA) triggered by Cd. Physiological and biochemical analysis showed that ZnO-NPs increased enzymatic activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD; 59%), catalase (CAT; 52%), and proline (17%) that metabolize reactive oxygen species (ROS); these increases coincided with the changes observed in the HO and MDA accumulation after ZnO-NPs application. In conclusion, ZnO-NPs application to foliage has great efficiency to improve biomass, photosynthesis, protein, antioxidant enzymes activity, mineral nutrient contents and reducing Cd levels in rice. This can be attributed mainly from reduced oxidative damage resulted due to the ZnO-NPs application.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoenv.2021.112401DOI Listing
September 2021

Synergistic effects of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria and silicon dioxide nano-particles for amelioration of drought stress in wheat.

Plant Physiol Biochem 2021 Jun 4;166:160-176. Epub 2021 Jun 4.

Department of Botany, S.P. College, Srinagar, Jammu, and Kashmir, India.

Drought tolerant plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) can confer drought tolerance in plants, when inoculated, and this effect can be more pronounced by their combined application with silicon oxide nanoparticles (SiO NPs). In this research, drought-tolerant and plant growth-promoting rhizobacterial strains were isolated from the rhizospheric soil of wheat plants growing in the arid region of Pakistan. Out of 30 isolated strains, three rhizobacterial strains were selected based on their drought tolerance, higher phytohormones (indole acetic acid (IAA), abscisic acid (ABA), and cytokinin (CK), and osmolyte (proline and sugar) production ability. These strains were identified as Bacillus sp. Azospirillum lipoferum and Azospirillum brasilense by 16S rRNA sequencing and accession numbers (MT482404, MT742664, and MT 742666, respectively) were obtained. Inoculation of these strains, alone and in combination, improved the germination attributes of wheat seeds under drought stress conditions. However, the combination of all three bacterial strains gave the best results. SiO NPs were prepared from silicon dioxide and characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Energy dispersive X-rays pattern (EDX), and UV-visible spectrum. The effect of SiO NPs was also tested on wheat seeds under drought stress and it was observed that SiO NPs (150 mg/L) create pronounced drought ameliorative potential in wheat seedlings. In the pot experiment, the combined application of SiO NPs and PGPR exhibited a synergistic role and improved the growth and yield of wheat. The interaction between SiO NPs and bacterial combination improved biomass (fresh and dry weight), and chlorophyll-a, b content by 138.78%, 65.70%, 128.57%, and 283.33% respectively as compared to untreated but drought exposed plants. They also improved relative water content (71.66%), gas exchange attributes, increased nutrients uptake, and osmolytes production of wheat. Up-regulation of antioxidant enzymes; superoxide dismutase (60.49%), peroxidase (55.99%), and catalase (81.69%) was also observed. This research work suggested that the application of SiO NPs and PGPR strains induced drought tolerance in wheat by modulating different physiological and metabolic processes in plants which ultimately improved the growth and yield of wheat under drought stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plaphy.2021.05.039DOI Listing
June 2021

Elucidating the role of silicon in drought stress tolerance in plants.

Plant Physiol Biochem 2021 Aug 7;165:187-195. Epub 2021 May 7.

Department of Botany, University of Kashmir Srinagar, 190006, Jammu and Kashmir, India. Electronic address:

Predicted changes in climate, with more severe droughts and more extreme weather variability, are gaining considerable attention from stakeholders because of the already stressed and seriously challenging agricultural ecosystems of the contemporary world. One of the greatest challenges faced by these unique ecosystems due to climate change is drought stress, which affects plant growth, development and metabolic processes, thus reducing production, yield, and quality of crop plants. Plants counter this stress by employing complex mechanisms through a series of physiological, cellular, and molecular processes. Among the myriad of stress tolerance mechanisms, the positive effects of Si on water status of plants have been widely appreciated. Here, we review the potential of Si supplementation in alleviating drought stress and highlight the imported mechanisms involved in Si mediated reduction of drought stress in plants. Si fertilization not only enhances the photosynthetic pigments, growth, biomass, antioxidant enzymes, gene expression, osmolyte concentrations and nutrient uptake but also improves crop production, yield and grain quality during drought stress. In addition, it provides insights on important mechanisms involved in the modification of gas exchange attributes, gene modification, nutritional homeostasis, control synthesis of compatible solutes, osmotic adjustment and stimulation of phytohormone biosynthesis and antioxidant enzymes under drought stress. We also highlight knowledge gaps and future research prospects to understand Si mediated role in alleviating drought stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plaphy.2021.04.021DOI Listing
August 2021

Understanding drought tolerance in plants.

Physiol Plant 2021 06;172(2):286-288

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ppl.13442DOI Listing
June 2021

Foliar application of fungicide-opera alleviates negative impact of water stress in soybean plants.

Saudi J Biol Sci 2021 May 6;28(5):2626-2633. Epub 2021 Mar 6.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The modulatory effect of opera was investigated on the physiological and morphological aspects in soybean thriving in water stress environment. The data procured from current investigation indicated that water stress significantly declined the plant growth, leaf area in addition to photosynthetic efficiency, nitrate reductase activity and crop yield at various stages of growth such as vegetative (VS), flowering (FS) and pod filling stage (PFS). However, foliar application of opera (0.15%) was effective to enhance the the leaf area (42%), rate of photosynthesis (194%), and nitrate reductase activity (68%) at FS stage while the maximum enhancement in biomass accumulation (92%) and yield (119%) was observed at PFS stage as compared to their control plants. The opera is applied as foliar spray in field experiments to augment the assimilation of nitrogen and carbon in soybean which contributes to increased crop development and productivity under water stress conditions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.sjbs.2021.02.079DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8117022PMC
May 2021

Exogenously applied spermidine confers protection against cinnamic acid-mediated oxidative stress in .

Saudi J Biol Sci 2021 May 20;28(5):2619-2625. Epub 2021 Feb 20.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

This study investigated the stress responses of cinnamic acid (CA) in pea plants and explored the protective role of spermidine (SPD) against CA-induced adverse effects. Pea seedlings exposed to CA had reduced length, biomass, moisture, chlorophyll, sugar, and protein contents and reduced nitrate reductase activity. These parameters increased when SPD was applied alone and in combination with CA. Electrolyte leakage and malondialdehyde content were high in seedlings treated with CA but decreased when the SPD + CA treatment was applied. Foliar exposure to SPD partially mitigated CA-induced stress effects by strengthening the antioxidant defense system, which helped preserve the integrity of biochemical processes. These results indicate that SPD (1 mM) could mitigate the adverse effects of CA and enhance plant defense system. Hence, SPD can be used as a growth regulator for the maintenance of physiological functions in pea plants in response to the pernicious consequences of CA stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.sjbs.2021.02.052DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8117030PMC
May 2021

Combined application of zinc oxide nanoparticles and biofertilizer to induce salt resistance in safflower by regulating ion homeostasis and antioxidant defence responses.

Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2021 May 5;218:112262. Epub 2021 May 5.

Department of Botany, S.P. College, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India. Electronic address:

Salinity is a key devastating abiotic factor that hinders the development and yield of safflower. The sole and combined application of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) and a biofertilizer (BF) to improve salt tolerance in safflower has not been thoroughly explored. The response of safflower plants in a pot experiment to the foliar spray of ZnO-NPs alone and in combination with a BF was thus detected. We determined that a ZnO-NP concentration of 17 mg/L was sufficient to protect safflower against salinity (250 mM NaCl) by increasing the plant productivity, percent water content, and osmolyte levels. Coapplication of ZnO-NPs and Phytoguard protected safflower plants from salinity stress by improving the activities of antioxidant enzymes and decreasing the levels of proline (leaves (61%) and roots (63%)) and malondialdehyde (MDA) (leaves (54%) and roots (65%)). Under salt stress, the Na content increased, while seed coating with biofertilizer and ZnO-NP spray significantly decreased the Na concentration (74% in leaves and 60% in roots). For the K concentration, however, antagonistic outcomes were observed. Additionally, the combined treatment significantly enhanced agronomic parameters such as the number of leaves and pods per plant, capitulum weight, and the number of yellow and wilted leaves per plant under salinity stress. Thus, ZnO-NPs could be an effective bio-source for the protection of safflower plants under salinity stress. Our findings showed that in the combined treatment of ZnO-NPs and biofertilizer, the salinity tolerance was more pronounced than in the single treatment and untreated control. A thorough analysis at the molecular level, however, is still required to understand the mechanism by which ZnO-NPs and BF in safflower plants alleviate salt stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoenv.2021.112262DOI Listing
May 2021

Zinc oxide nanoparticles and 24-epibrassinolide alleviates Cu toxicity in tomato by regulating ROS scavenging, stomatal movement and photosynthesis.

Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2021 May 3;218:112293. Epub 2021 May 3.

Collaborative Innovation Center of Sustainable Forestry in Southern China, College of Forest Science, Nanjing Forestry University, Nanjing 210037, China. Electronic address:

Nanoparticles (NPs) have recently emerged as potential agents for plants to ameliorate abiotic stresses by acting as nano-fertilizers. In this regard, the influence of the zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) on plant responses to copper (Cu) stress has been poorly understood. Hence, the present study was executed to explore the role of ZnO-NPs (foliar) and 24-epibrassinolide (EBL; root dipping) individually or in combined form in the resilience of tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) plant to Cu stress. Tomato seeds were sown to make the nursery; and at 20 days after sowing (DAS) the plantlets were submerged in 10 M of EBL solution for 2 h, and subsequently transplanted in the soil-filled earthen pots. Cu concentration (100 mg kg) was applied to the soil at 30 DAS, whereas at 35 DAS plants were sprinkled with double distilled water (DDW; control), 50 mg/L of Zinc (Zn) and 50 mg/L of ZnO-NPs; and plant performance were evaluated at 45 DAS. It was evident that Cu-stress reduced photosynthesis (17.3%), stomatal conductance (18.1%), plant height (19.7%), and nitrate reductase (NR) activity (19.2%), but increased malondialdehyde (MDA; 29.4%), superoxide radical (O; 22.3%) and hydrogen peroxide (HO; 26.2%) content in S. lycopersicum. Moreover, ZnO-NPs and/or EBL implemented via different modes improved photosynthetic activity, stomatal aperture, growth, cell viability and activity of antioxidant enzymes and proline that augmented resilience of tomato plants to Cu stress. These observations depicted that application of ZnO-NPs and EBL could be a useful approach to assist Cu confiscation and stress tolerance against Cu in tomato plants grown in Cu contaminated sites.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoenv.2021.112293DOI Listing
May 2021

Uptake, accumulation and elimination of cadmium in a soil - Faba bean (Vicia faba) - Aphid (Aphis fabae) - Ladybird (Coccinella transversalis) food chain.

Chemosphere 2021 Sep 8;279:130522. Epub 2021 Apr 8.

Department of Botany, S.P. College, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India. Electronic address:

Cadmium is a highly mobile toxic heavy metal and a serious hazard to the biosphere. We studied uptake, accumulation and elimination of cadmium in a soil - faba bean - aphid - ladybird food chain. The soil in the study was amended with Cd at concentrations 0, 5, 10, 20 and, 30 mg kg (w/w). We noted significant Cd transfer in a dose-dependent manner. Cadmium biomagnified in faba bean roots and aphids while biominimized in ladybirds as revealed by their respective transfer coefficients. The concentration-dependent removal of Cd from aphids through excretion via honeydew as well as through pupal exuviae of ladybirds during metamorphosis links to possible mechanisms of Cd detoxification at these trophic levels, which regulates the bioaccumulation of Cd along the food chain. These findings press for the advance studies to find and understand the physiological pathways and mechanisms leading to bio-minimization of Cd across the food chain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2021.130522DOI Listing
September 2021

Exogenous 24-Epibrassinolide stimulates root protection, and leaf antioxidant enzymes in lead stressed rice plants: Central roles to minimize Pb content and oxidative stress.

Environ Pollut 2021 Jul 21;280:116992. Epub 2021 Mar 21.

Núcleo de Pesquisa Vegetal Básica e Aplicada, Universidade Federal Rural da Amazônia Paragominas, Pará, Brazil. Electronic address:

Lead (Pb) is an environmental pollutant that negatively affects rice plants, causing damage to the root system and chloroplast structures, as well as reducing growth. 24-Epibrasnolide (EBR) is a plant growth regulator with a high capacity to modulate antioxidant metabolism. The objective of this research was to investigate whether exogenous EBR application can mitigate oxidative damage in Pb-stressed rice plants, measure anatomical structures and evaluate physiological and biochemical responses connected with redox metabolism. The experiment was randomized with four treatments, including two lead treatments (0 and 200 μM PbCl, described as - Pb and + Pb, respectively) and two treatments with brassinosteroid (0 and 100 nM EBR, described as - EBR and + EBR, respectively). The results revealed that plants exposed to Pb suffered significant disturbances, but the EBR alleviated the negative interferences, as confirmed by the improvements in the root structures and antioxidant system. This steroid stimulated the root structures, increasing the epidermis thickness (26%) and aerenchyma area (50%), resulting in higher protection of this tissue against Pb ions. Additionally, EBR promoted significant increases in superoxide dismutase (26%), catalase (24%), ascorbate peroxidase (54%) and peroxidase (63%) enzymes, reducing oxidative stress on the photosynthetic machinery in Pb-stressed plants. This research proved that EBR mitigates the toxic effects generated by Pb in rice plants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2021.116992DOI Listing
July 2021

Combined gas exchange characteristics, chlorophyll fluorescence and response curves as selection traits for temperature tolerance in maize genotypes.

Photosynth Res 2021 Mar 30. Epub 2021 Mar 30.

Plant Molecular Biology Lab, Department of Botany, University of Kashmir, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, 190 006, India.

Maize is a low-temperature (LT)-sensitive plant and its physiological responses towards LT of temperate regions developed is an adaptive trait. To further our understanding about the response of maize to LT at the physiological and photosynthesis level, we conducted Infrared Gas Analysis (IRGA using LICOR6400-XT in 45-day-old grown two maize genotypes, one from temperate region (Gurez-Kashmir Himalayas), viz., Gurez local (Gz local), and another from tropics (Gujarat), viz., GM6. This study was carried out to evaluate the underlying physiological mechanisms in the two differentially temperature-tolerant maize genotypes. Net photosynthetic rate (A/P), 18.253 in Gz local and 25.587 (µmol CO m s) in GM6; leaf conductance (gs), 0.0102 in Gz local and 0.0566 (mmol HO m s) in GM6; transpiration rate (E), 0.5371 in Gz local and 2.9409 (mmol HO m s) in GM6; and water use efficiency (WUE), 33.9852 in Gz local and 8.7224 (µmol CO mmol HO) in GM6, were recorded under ambient conditions. Also, photochemical efficiency of photosystem II (PSII) (F/F), 0.675 in Gz local and 0.705 in GM6; maximum photochemical efficiency (F'/F'), 0.310234 in Gz local and 0.401391 in GM6; photochemical quenching (qP), 0.2375 in Gz local and 0.2609 in GM6; non-photochemical quenching (NPQ), 2.0036 in Gz local and 1.1686 in GM6; effective yield of PSII (ФPSII), 0.0789 in Gz local and 0.099 in GM6; and electron transport rate (ETR), 55.3152 in Gz local and 68.112 in GM6, were also evaluated in addition to various response curves, like light intensities and temperature. We observed that light response curves show the saturation light intensity requirement of 1600 µmol for both the genotypes, whereas temperature response curves showed the optimum temperature requirement for Gz local as 20 °C and for GM6 it was found to be 35 °C. The results obtained for each individual parameter and other correlational studies indicate that IRGA forms a promising route for quick and reliable screening of various stress-tolerant valuable genotypes, forming the first study of its kind.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11120-021-00829-zDOI Listing
March 2021

Effect of green and chemically synthesized titanium dioxide nanoparticles on cadmium accumulation in wheat grains and potential dietary health risk: A field investigation.

J Hazard Mater 2021 08 8;415:125585. Epub 2021 Mar 8.

Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Government College University Faisalabad, Faisalabad 38000, Pakistan; Department of Biological Sciences and Technology, China Medical University, Taichung 40402, Taiwan. Electronic address:

A field study was designed to explore the impacts of foliar-applied chemically and green synthesized titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO NPs) on cadmium (Cd) uptake in wheat plants. The wheat was grown in field which was contaminated with Cd and plants were subjected to foliar episodes of TiO NPs during plant growth period. Leaf extracts of two plant species (Trianthema portulacastrum, Chenopodium quinoa) were used for green synthesis while sol-gel method was used for chemical preparation of TiO NPs. Results showed that TiO NPs significantly enhanced the plant height, length of spikes photosynthesis, and straw and grain yield compared to control. TiO NPs minimized the oxidative burst in leaves and improved the enzyme activities than control. Cadmium concentrations of straw, roots and grains decreased after TiO NPs treatments than control. The grain Cd contents were below recommended threshold (0.2 mg Cd /kg grain DW) for cereals upon NPs exposure. The health risk index by the dietary use of grains for adults was below threshold upon NPs exposure. Overall, foliar use of TiO NPs prepared from plant extracts was appropriate in minimizing Cd contents in wheat grains, thereby reducing risk of Cd to human health via food chain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.125585DOI Listing
August 2021

Arbuscular mycorrhiza in combating abiotic stresses in vegetables: An eco-friendly approach.

Saudi J Biol Sci 2021 Feb 9;28(2):1465-1476. Epub 2020 Dec 9.

Department of Botany and Microbiology, College of Science, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2455, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia.

Vegetable production is hampered by several abiotic stresses which are very common in this era of climate change. There is a huge pressure on the plants to survive and yield better results even in the prevalence of various environmental stresses such as cold stress, drought, heat stress, salinity etc. This necessitates the need of robust plant growth which is possible with mycorrhizal association. Mycorrhiza improves plants tolerance to several abiotic stresses by various physiological, functional and biochemical changes in plants. The application of arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM) as vegetable biofertilizers doesn't only influence the plant health, but moreover discursively it lowers the demand for harmful chemical fertilizers. Overall, it may be concluded that inoculation of vegetables with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi can be used, as it easily guards plants against undesirable abiotic stresses. In this work, information is provided based on several examples from the literature based on the application of AM to combat harmful abiotic stresses in vegetable crops. This paper reviews the impacts of AM fungi on the plant parameters, its functional activities and molecular mechanisms which makes it more adaptable and underline the future prospects of using AM fungi as a biofertilizer in the stress condition.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.sjbs.2020.12.001DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7878692PMC
February 2021

Deciphering genetic diversity analysis of saffron ( L.) using RAPD and ISSR markers.

Saudi J Biol Sci 2021 Feb 24;28(2):1308-1317. Epub 2020 Nov 24.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The existence of genetic diversity in has globally remained a mystery till date. The study investigated PCR based DNA amplification profile of saffron using ISSR and RAPD based primers. A total of 38 amplicons were generated by ISSR primers in the range from 7 to 12 with an average of 9.50 bands per primer. 20 bands were found to be polymorphic and 18 were monomorphic with an average percentage of polymorphism as 52.48%. RAPD based amplification revealed a total 161 amplicons, 107 as polymorphic and 54 as monomorphic with an average percentage of polymorphism as 66.44%. Cumulative results of RAPD and ISSR demonstrated that Nei-Li's similarity index ranged between 0.70 and 0.97. The results of AMOVA has revealed 9% of variance among populations and 91% of variance within populations, Φ PT was found as 0.089, which indicates existence of genetic differences though limited. In conclusion, the results indicate that saffron accessions are minimally genetically differentiated, which could be capitalized in future breeding programmes to ameliorate this precious crop.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.sjbs.2020.11.063DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7878693PMC
February 2021

Scanning electron microscopy of Sophora alopecuroides L. seeds and their cytotoxic, antimicrobial, antioxidant, and enzyme inhibition potentials.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Feb 18. Epub 2021 Feb 18.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Sophora alopecuroides L. is a highly medicinal plant. The aim of the current study was to determine the phytochemical screening, pharmacological potentials and application of scanning electron microscope (SEM) of S. alopecuroides (SA) seeds. To achieve this purpose, six different solvents were used to prepare SA seed extracts. Phytochemical and antioxidant activities were determined calorimetrically. To investigate the antidiabetic activity, α-amylase inhibition assay was determined. Brine shrimp assay was used to determine cytotoxicity potential. Anti-leishmanial potential was confirmed using MTT assay. Disc-diffusion method was used to detect protein kinase inhibitory, antibacterial and antifungal activities and showed significant results. SEM analysis was used as an identification tool. Considerable amount of phenolic and flavonoid contents were identified in methanol extract (SASM) (93.76 ± 2.71 GAE/mg) and (77 ± 3.60 QE/mg). Highest DPPH scavenging potential (82%) was reported for SASM. Significant total antioxidant capacity (90.60 ± 1.55 alpha amylase enzyme [AAE]/mg) and total reducing power (94.44 ± 1.38 AAE/mg) were determined for LOSM. Highest α-amylase inhibition was reported in SASM (78.20 ± 1.58%). Highest LD of brine shrimp was found for n-hexane extract (SASH) 13.03 μg/ml. All extracts showed strong anti-leishmanial activity except SASH. The seeds of SA were seen to be oblong to obovate, projections, wavy slightly straight, anticlinal wall was raised with apex acuminate. In conclusion, our experimental findings highly support the ethnomedicinal and biological potentials of the SA seeds. Moreover, SA seeds need to be explored for identification and isolation of bioactive compounds. In future, we recommend further in vivo toxicity assays and clinical efficacies to further evaluate its different biomedical properties.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23740DOI Listing
February 2021

Zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) induce salt tolerance by improving the antioxidant system and photosynthetic machinery in tomato.

Plant Physiol Biochem 2021 Apr 5;161:122-130. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Collaborative Innovation Centre of Sustainable Forestry in Southern China, College of Forest Science, Nanjing Forestry University, 159 Longpan Road, Nanjing, Jiangsu, 210037, China. Electronic address:

Zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) has been demonstrated to positively regulate plant tolerance to multiple environmental stresses. However, till date little information has been gained regarding the role of ZnO-NPs in the salt stress regulation in plants. Hence, the objective of our study was to investigate the role of ZnO-NPs in the regulation of salt tolerance in tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.). In this regard, the tomato plants were subjected to salt stress by using NaCl (150 mM) at the time of transplantation [15 days after sowing (DAS)]. Foliar application of ZnO-NPs at different levels viz., 10, 50 and 100 mg/L in the presence/absence of NaCl (150 mM) was carried out at 25 DAS and sampling was done at 35 DAS. Results of our study revealed that foliar spray of ZnO-NPs significantly increased shoot length (SL) and root length (RL), biomass, leaf area, chlorophyll content and photosynthetic attributes of tomato plants in the presence/absence of salt stress. Besides, the application of ZnO-NPs mitigates the negative impacts of salt stress on tomato growth, and enhanced protein content and antioxidative enzyme activity such as peroxidase (POX), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT) under salt stress. In conclusion, the ZnO-NPs plays an important role in the alleviation of NaCl toxicity in tomato plants. Hence, the ZnO-NPs can be used to boost the growth performance and mitigate the adverse effects caused by NaCl in tomato.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plaphy.2021.02.002DOI Listing
April 2021

Exogenous hemin improves Cd tolerance and remediation potential in Vigna radiata by intensifying the HO-1 mediated antioxidant defence system.

Sci Rep 2021 Feb 2;11(1):2811. Epub 2021 Feb 2.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, 11451, Saudi Arabia.

The present study evaluated the effects of exogenous hemin on cadmium toxicity in terms of metal accretion and stress resilience in Vigna radiata L. (Wilczek). One-week-old seedlings were treated with CdCl (50 μM) alone and in combination with hemin (0.5 mM) in half-strength Hoagland medium for 96 h. The optimum concentrations of Cd and hemin were determined on the basis of haem oxygenase-1 activity. The results demonstrated that under Cd stress, plants accumulated a considerable amount of metal in their tissues, and the accumulation was higher in roots than in leaves, which significantly reduced the plant biomass and chlorophyll content by increasing the oxidative stress (MDA and HO content). However, hemin supplementation under Cd,-stress improved plant growth by enhancing the harvestable biomass and photosynthetic pigments, increasing antioxidant activities (SOD, APX, POD, HO-1 and proline), lowering oxidative damage and increasing Cd tolerance in plants. Furthermore, the application of hemin enhances the removal efficiency of Cd in V. radiata by increasing the uptake of Cd via roots and its translocation from roots to foliar tissues. Thus, the study suggests that hemin has the potential to improve the stress tolerance and phytoremediation ability of heavy metal-tolerant plants so that they can be used instead of hyperaccumulators for remediation of Cd-contaminated environments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-82391-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7854669PMC
February 2021

Herbal immune-boosters: Substantial warriors of pandemic Covid-19 battle.

Phytomedicine 2021 May 3;85:153361. Epub 2020 Oct 3.

Department of Botany and Microbiology, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia. Electronic address:

Current scenario depicts that world has been clenched by COVID-19 pandemic. Inevitably, public health and safety measures could be undertaken in order to dwindle the infection threat and mortality. Moreover, to overcome the global menace and drawing out world from moribund stage, there is an exigency for social distancing and quarantines. Since December, 2019, coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) have came into existence and up till now world is still in the state of shock.At this point of time, COVID-19 has entered perilous phase, creating havoc among individuals, and this has been directly implied due to enhanced globalisation and ability of the virus to acclimatize at all conditions. The unabated transmission is due to lack of drugs, vaccines and therapeutics against this viral outbreak. But research is still underway to formulate the vaccines or drugs by this means, as scientific communities are continuously working to unravel the pharmacologically active compounds that might offer a new insight for curbing infections and pandemics. Therefore, the topical COVID-19 situation highlights an immediate need for effective therapeutics against SARS-CoV-2. Towards this effort, the present review discusses the vital concepts related to COVID-19, in terms of its origin, transmission, clinical aspects and diagnosis. However, here, we have formulated the novel concept hitherto, ancient means of traditional medicines or herbal plants to beat this pandemic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phymed.2020.153361DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7532351PMC
May 2021

The effect of NADPH oxidase inhibitor diphenyleneiodonium (DPI) and glutathione (GSH) on , under Arsenic (As) toxicity.

Int J Phytoremediation 2021 Jan 21:1-13. Epub 2021 Jan 21.

Department of Botany, S.P. College, Srinagar, India.

The present work was conducted to assess the effects of arsenic (As, 1000 µM), diphenyleneiodonium (DPI, 10 µM) and reduced glutathione (GSH, 500 µM) on . As treatment decreased plant growth and fresh and dry weight of shoot and root and also enhanced the accumulation of As. As stress also enhanced the oxidative stress biomarkers, hydrogen peroxide (HO) and malondialdehyde (MDA) content. However, the application of GSH decreased the content of HO and MDA by 43% and 55%, respectively, as compared to As treatment. The antioxidants like superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), peroxidase (POD), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), glutathione reductase (GR) and glutathione S-transferase (GST) also enhanced with As stress. NADPH oxidase inhibitor, the DPI, enhances the effect of As toxicity by increasing the accumulation of As, HO, MDA. DPI also enhances the activity of antioxidant enzymes except GR and GST, However, the application GSH increased the plant growth and biomass yield, decreases accumulation of As, HO and MDA content in As as well as As + DPI treated plants. The thiols content [total thiol (TT), non-protein thiol (NPT) protein thiols (PT), and glutathione (GSH)] were decreased in the As + DPI treatment but supplementation of GSH enhanced them. The study reveals the beneficial role of GSH in mitigating the deleterious effects of Arsenic toxicity through its active involvement in the antioxidant metabolism, thiol synthesis and osmolyte accumulation. Apart from As, We provided the plants NADPH oxidase inhibitor, the diphenyleneiodonium (DPI), which boosts the As toxicity. At present, there is dearth of information pertaining to the effects of DPI on plants growth and their responses under heavy metal stress.GSH application reversed the effect of diphenyleneiodonium (DPI) under As stress preventing the oxidative damage to biomolecules through the modulation of different antioxidant enzymes. The application of GSH for As stressed soil could be a sustainable approach for crop production.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15226514.2020.1870435DOI Listing
January 2021

Biochar as a tool for effective management of drought and heavy metal toxicity.

Chemosphere 2021 May 28;271:129458. Epub 2020 Dec 28.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, 11451, Saudi Arabia; Department of Botany, S.P. College, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India. Electronic address:

Drought and heavy metal stress undesirably disturb soil fertility and plant growth. Heavy metals pose severe biological toxic effects. Biochar, a carbon rich source application ameliorates this stress by increasing the plant growth, biomass, nutrient uptake and improves gaseous exchange in drought stress. Application of biochar reduces drought stress by increasing water holding capacity of soil through modification of soil physio-chemical properties that in turn increases water availability to plants and also enhances mineral uptake and regulation of stomatal conductance. Biochar mediates the retention of moisture, nutrients, inhibits harmful bacteria, absorbs heavy metals, pesticides, prevents soil erosion, increases soil pH, improves cationic exchange and boosts soil fertility. Drought and heavy metal stress often lead to production of reactive oxygen species. However, biochar significantly modifies the Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) scavenging enzymes and provides an efficient electron transferring mechanism to tackle the toxic effects of ROS in plants. Biochar is regarded as a tool for the effective management of agricultural productivity and various environmental issues. This review provides insights on the potential role of biochar in ameliorating drought and heavy metal stress.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.129458DOI Listing
May 2021

Drought-tolerant Bacillus megaterium isolated from semi-arid conditions induces systemic tolerance of wheat under drought conditions.

Plant Cell Rep 2021 Jan 7. Epub 2021 Jan 7.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Key Message: A detailed study of the response of wheat plants, inoculated with drought-tolerant PGPR is studied which would be beneficial to achieve genetic improvement of wheat for drought tolerance. Drought stress, a major challenge under current climatic conditions, adversely affects wheat productivity. In the current study, we observed the response of wheat plants, inoculated with drought-tolerant plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) Bacillus megaterium (MU2) and Bacillus licheniformis (MU8) under induced drought stress. In vitro study of 90 rhizobacteria exhibited 38 isolates showed one or more plant growth-promoting properties, such as solubilization of phosphorus, potassium, and exopolysaccharide production. Four strains revealing the best activities were tested for their drought-tolerance ability by growing them on varying water potentials (- 0.05 to - 0.73 MPa). Among them, two bacterial strains Bacillus megaterium and Bacillus licheniformis showed the best drought-tolerance potential, ACC deaminase activities, IAA production, and antagonistic activities against plant pathogens. Additionally, these strains when exposed to drought stress (- 0.73 MPa) revealed the induction of three new polypeptides (18 kDa, 35 kDa, 30 kDa) in Bacillus megaterium. We determined that 10 cells/mL of Bacillus megaterium and Bacillus licheniformis were enough to induce drought tolerance in wheat under drought stress. These drought-tolerant strains increased the germination index (11-46%), promptness index (16-50%), seedling vigor index (11-151%), fresh weight (35-192%), and dry weight (58-226%) of wheat under irrigated and drought stress. Moreover, these strains efficiently colonized the wheat roots and increased plant biomass, relative water content, photosynthetic pigments, and osmolytes. Upon exposure to drought stress, Bacillus megaterium inoculated wheat plants exhibited improved tolerance by enhancing 59% relative water content, 260, 174 and 70% chlorophyll a, b and carotenoid, 136% protein content, 117% proline content and 57% decline in MDA content. Further, activities of defense-related antioxidant enzymes were also upregulated. Our results revealed that drought tolerance was more evident in Bacillus megaterium as compared to Bacillus licheniformis. These strains could be effective bioenhancer and biofertilizer for wheat cultivation in arid and semi-arid regions. However, a detailed study at the molecular level to deduce the mechanism by which these strains alleviate drought stress in wheat plants needs to be explored.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00299-020-02640-xDOI Listing
January 2021

Antimicrobial, cytotoxic, antioxidants, enzyme inhibition activities, and scanning electron microscopy of Lactuca orientalis (Boiss.) Boiss. seeds.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Jun 5;84(6):1284-1295. Epub 2021 Jan 5.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Lactuca orientalis (Boiss.) Boiss. is one of the most frequently used ethnomedicinal plant. This research study was designed to decipher the phytochemical screening, pharmacological potential and implementation of scanning electron microscope (SEM). Six different solvents were used to prepare L. orientalis (LO) seed extracts. Phytochemical and antioxidant activities were determined calorimetrically. To investigate antidiabetic, α-amylase inhibition assay was performed. Brine shrimp assay was performed for cytotoxicity and anti-leishmanial via MTT assay. Disc-diffusion assay was performed to detect protein kinase inhibitory, antibacterial and antifungal activities. SEM was used as identification tool. Significant amount of phenolic and flavonoid content were identified in methanol extract (LOSM) (95.76 ± 3.71 GAE/mg) and (77 ± 3.60 QE/mg). Highest DPPH scavenging potential (82%) was reported for LOSM. Significant total antioxidant capacity (90.60 ± 1.55 AAE/mg) and total reducing power (94.44 ± 1.38 AAE/mg) were determined for LOSM. Highest α-amylase inhibition was found in LOSM (78.20 ± 1.58%). The highest LD of brine shrimp was found for n-Hexane extract (LOSH) 13.03 𝜇g/ml. All extracts showed strong anti-leishmanial activity except LOSH. L. orientalis seeds showed significant protein kinase inhibition, antibacterial and antifungal activities. The seeds of L. orientalis were seen to be oblong to obovate, projections, wavy slightly straight, anticlinal wall was raised with apex acuminate. The outer-periclinal wall convex with fine texture. In conclusion, our findings scientifically support ethnomedicinal and biological potentials of L. orientalis seeds. In future, L. orientalis seeds need to be explored for identification and isolation of bioactive compounds. The results obtained necessitate further in vivo studies to evaluate their pharmacological potentials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23687DOI Listing
June 2021

Nitric oxide donor, sodium nitroprusside, mitigates mercury toxicity in different cultivars of soybean.

J Hazard Mater 2021 04 14;408:124852. Epub 2020 Dec 14.

University of Wuppertal, School of Architecture and Civil Engineering, Institute of Foundation Engineering, Water, and Waste-Management, Laboratory of Soil, and Groundwater-Management, Pauluskirchstraße 7, 42285 Wuppertal, Germany; Department of Environment, Energy, and Geoinformatics, Sejong University, Seoul 05006, Republic of Korea.

The present study reveals the effect of mercury (Hg) and sodium nitroprusside (SNP) on plant growth and metabolism in soybean cultivars (Pusa-24, Pusa-37and Pusa-40). Mercury stress decreased growth and biomass yield, and gas exchange attributes in all soybean cultivars. External supplementation of SNP mitigated Hg toxicity by improving growth and gas exchange parameters. Electrolyte leakage (EL) increased accompanied with elevated levels of malondialdehyde (MDA) and HO under Hg stress, however, they were found to be reduced in all cultivars upon the exogenous application of SNP. The activities of anti-oxidative enzymes, superoxide dismutase and catalase (SOD and CAT) and those enzymes involved in the ascorbate-glutathione pathway were impaired by Hg stress, but they were regulated by the application of SNP. Accumulation of Hg and NO in the shoots and roots were also regulated by the application of NO. Although, all three cultivars were affected by Hg stress, Pusa-37 was relatively less affected. Mercury stress affected the growth and development of different soybean cultivars, but Pusa-37 being tolerant was less affected. Pusa-37 was found to be more responsive to SNP than Pusa-24, Pusa-40 under Hg toxicity. The external supplementation of SNP could be a sustainable approach to economically utilize Hg affected soils.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2020.124852DOI Listing
April 2021

Mechanisms Underlying Graft Union Formation and Rootstock Scion Interaction in Horticultural Plants.

Front Plant Sci 2020 10;11:590847. Epub 2020 Dec 10.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyad, Saudi Arabia.

Grafting is a common practice for vegetative propagation and trait improvement in horticultural plants. A general prerequisite for successful grafting and long term survival of grafted plants is taxonomic proximity between the root stock and scion. For the success of a grafting operation, rootstock and scion should essentially be closely related. Interaction between the rootstock and scion involves complex physiological-biochemical and molecular mechanisms. Successful graft union formation involves a series of steps viz., lining up of vascular cambium, generation of a wound healing response, callus bridge formation, followed by vascular cambium formation and subsequent formation of the secondary xylem and phloem. For grafted trees compatibility between the rootstock/scion is the most essential factor for their better performance and longevity. Graft incompatibility occurs on account of a number of factors including of unfavorable physiological responses across the graft union, transmission of virus or phytoplasma and anatomical deformities of vascular tissue at the graft junction. In order to avoid the incompatibility problems, it is important to predict the same at an early stage. Phytohormones, especially auxins regulate key events in graft union formation between the rootstock and scion, while others function to facilitate the signaling pathways. Transport of macro as well as micro molecules across long distances results in phenotypic variation shown by grafted plants, therefore grafting can be used to determine the pattern and rate of recurrence of this transport. A better understanding of rootstock scion interactions, endogenous growth substances, soil or climatic factors needs to be studied, which would facilitate efficient selection and use of rootstocks in the future. Protein, hormones, mRNA and small RNA transport across the junction is currently emerging as an important mechanism which controls the stock/scion communication and simultaneously may play a crucial role in understanding the physiology of grafting more precisely. This review provides an understanding of the physiological, biochemical and molecular basis underlying grafting with special reference to horticultural plants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2020.590847DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7758432PMC
December 2020

Silicon distribution in leaves and roots of rice and maize in response to cadmium and zinc toxicity and the associated histological variations.

Physiol Plant 2020 Dec 11. Epub 2020 Dec 11.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

At present, the levels of cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) in arable land are high and affect the growth and development of important food crops, including rice and maize. However, the application of silicon (Si) in contaminated areas increases the metal tolerance potential of these plants. This work aimed to study the variations in the distribution pattern of endogenous Si in various tissue regions in roots and leaves of rice and maize exposed to cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) stresses. For these experiments, 45 day-old rice (var. Varsha) and maize (var. CoHM6) seedlings were treated with 1.95 g Zn and 0.45 g Cd kg soil. Under Cd stress, the distribution of Si was high in the cortical region of the root, but under Zn stress, the highest Si deposition was found in the endodermis. In leaves, Si deposition was high in both the mesodermis and stelar regions of Cd-treated plants but more Si was deposited in the mesodermis tissue of Zn-treated plants. Heavy metal (Cd and Zn) accumulation and Si deposition showed a strong negative correlation in the roots of rice and maize plants. Complexation with metal ions and redistribution of Si were considered the major mechanisms in Si-mediated mitigation of Cd and Zn stress. Cd- and Zn-induced anatomical changes, such as endodermal thickening, deposits in the xylary elements and aerenchyma formation in the roots of rice and maize, were also associated with the Si distribution.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ppl.13310DOI Listing
December 2020

Plant-growth-promoting Bacillus and Paenibacillus species improve the nutritional status of Triticum aestivum L.

PLoS One 2020 1;15(12):e0241130. Epub 2020 Dec 1.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Wheat is one of the best-domesticated cereal crops and one of the vital sources of nutrition for humans. An investigation was undertaken to reveal the potential of novel bio-inoculants enriching micronutrients in shoot and grains of wheat crop to eliminate the hazards of malnutrition. Sole as well as consortia inoculation of bio-inoculants significantly enhanced mineral nutrients including zinc (Zn) and iron (Fe) concentrations in shoot and grains of wheat. Various treatments of bio-inoculants increase Zn and Fe content up to 1-15% and 3-13%, respectively. Sole inoculation of Bacillus aryabhattai (S10) impressively improves the nutritious of wheat. However, the maximum increase in minerals contents of wheat was recorded by consortia inoculation of Paenibacillus polymyxa ZM27, Bacillus subtilis ZM63 and Bacillus aryabhattai S10. This treatment also showed a maximum bacterial population (18 × 104 cfu mL-1) in the rhizosphere. The consortium application of these strains showed up to a 17% increase in yield. It is evident from the results that the consortium application was more effective than sole and co-inoculation. A healthy positive correlation was found between growth, yield, and the accessibility of micronutrients to wheat crops at the harvesting stage. The present investigations revealed the significance of novel bacterial strains in improving the nutritional status of wheat crops. These strains could be used as bio-inoculants for the biofortification of wheat to combat hidden hunger in developing countries.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0241130PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7707572PMC
January 2021

Foliar fertigation of ascorbic acid and zinc improves growth, antioxidant enzyme activity and harvest index in barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) grown under salt stress.

Plant Physiol Biochem 2021 Jan 7;158:244-254. Epub 2020 Nov 7.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Department of Botany, S.P. College, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India. Electronic address:

Crop productivity is limited by several environmental constraints. Among these, salt stress plays a key role in limiting the growth and yield production of economically important agricultural crops. However, the exogenous fertigation of vitamins and minerals could serve as a "shot-gun" approach for offsetting the deleterious effects of salts present in the rhizosphere. Therefore, an experiment was conducted to quantify the efficacy of foliar fertigation of ascorbic acid (vitamin-C) and zinc (Zn) on the physio-biochemical attributes of barley (Hordeum vulgare L. Genotype B-14011) grown in a saline environment. The salt stress resulted in a reduced biological yield associated with a decrease in chlorophyll pigment, while a significant enhancement in Na and Zn was observed under salinity stress. Similarly, the contents of total soluble proteins, total free amino acids, lipid peroxidation, and HO and the activities of antioxidative enzymes (SOD, POD, CAT, APX and proline) were significantly enhanced under salinity stress. Moreover, salinity negatively affected the yield attributes and ion uptake of plants. However, foliar fertigation with AsA +0.03% Zn enhanced vegetative growth, photosynthetic pigments, synchronized ion uptake, the synthesis of enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants, and the harvest index. It is inferred from this study that among all treatments, the effect of foliar fertigation with the AsA+0.03% Zn combination not only improved the salt stress tolerance but also improved the yield attributes, which will aid in the improvement in barley seed yield and is a step to solve the problem of malnutrition through biofortification of vitamin-C and zinc.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plaphy.2020.11.007DOI Listing
January 2021

Melatonin improves the seed filling rate and endogenous hormonal mechanism in grains of summer maize.

Physiol Plant 2021 Jun 18;172(2):1059-1072. Epub 2021 Jan 18.

Key Laboratory of Crop Physio-ecology and Tillage in Northwestern Loess Plateau, Ministry of Agriculture, College of Agronomy, Northwest A&F University, Yangling, China.

The unpredictable precipitation and water deficit conditions in semiarid regions significantly reduce the yield of summer maize. The exogenous application of plant growth regulators can be used as a strategy to enhance plant stress tolerance and improve the growth and yield of maize under semiarid conditions. Here, we studied the protective role of melatonin application on maize yield using grain filling rate and hormonal crosstalk in maize grains. In the first field experiment, seeds were soaked with melatonin at a concentration of 0 (SM ), 25 (SM ), 50 (SM ), and 75 μM (SM ) μM. In contrast, in the second experiment, melatonin was applied on the foliage at the ninth leaf stage at a concentration of 0 (FM ), 25 (FM ), 50 (FM ), and 75 (FM ) μM. Our findings showed that melatonin treatments as seed soaking significantly increased single seed weight, seed filling rate in superior, medium and inferior seeds by regulating the hormone levels compared to foliar application. Application of melatonin significantly increased the zeatin+zeatin riboside (Z+ZR), indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), and gibberellic acid (GA) contents. However, it significantly inhibited the contents of abscisic acid (ABA) during the seed filling period. The content of Z+ZR, IAA, and GA was positively correlated with the maximum seed filling rate, seed weight, and mean filling rate in middle, superior and lower seeds, while the ABA was negatively correlated. The ABA content in inferior seeds was positively correlated with the maximum and mean seed filling rate. In semiarid regions, melatonin treatment of SM and FM significantly increased the dry matter per plant, 100-grain weight, seed filling rate, IAA, Z+ZR, GA contents, ear characteristics, and maize yield.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ppl.13282DOI Listing
June 2021

Impact of bovine serum albumin - A protein corona on toxicity of ZnO NPs in environmental model systems of plant, bacteria, algae and crustaceans.

Chemosphere 2021 May 20;270:128629. Epub 2020 Oct 20.

Nanobiotechnology Laboratory, Department of Biotechnology, Bannari Amman Institute of Technology, Sathyamangalam, Tamil Nadu, India. Electronic address:

Zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO NPs) are widely applied in industrial, household and medical areas that lead to its discharge and accumulation in ecosystem. Here, the toxic effect of ZnO NPs in presence and absence of bovine serum albumin (BSA) was analyzed. The difference in toxicity of bare ZnO and BSA interacted ZnO was studied with different environmental models. P. aeruginosa and S. aureus were used as model bacterial systems. Toxicity against bacteria was determined by employing plate count method. C. pyrenoidsa was used as algal system for evaluating toxicity and it was determined by chlorophyll estimation assay. Daphnia sp. was chosen as crustacean system model. A. cepa root cells were chosen as plant model. ZnO NPs increased the ROS formation, lipid peroxidation and oxidative stress and it reduced in the presence of BSA. The cytotoxicity, chromosomal aberrations and micronuclei (MN) index of A. cepa were increased after ZnO NPs treatment. Same time the toxic effect was decreased in case of BSA coated ZnO NPs. The NPs toxic potential on the organisms decreased in the order of P. aeruginosa (LC-0.092 mg/L) > S. aureus (LC-0.33 mg/L) > Daphnia sp (LC-0.35 mg/L) > C. pyrenoidosa (LC-8.17 mg/L). LC in presence of BSA was determined to be 18.45, 26.24, 17.27 and 53.97 mg/L for P. aeruginosa, S. aureus, Daphnia sp and C. pyrenoidosa respectively. Therefore, the report suggests that BSA stabilized ZnO NPs could be more amenable towards applications in biotechnology and bioengineering.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.128629DOI Listing
May 2021

Foliar Application of 24-Epibrassinolide Improves Growth, Ascorbate-Glutathione Cycle, and Glyoxalase System in Brown Mustard ( (L.) Czern.) under Cadmium Toxicity.

Plants (Basel) 2020 Nov 4;9(11). Epub 2020 Nov 4.

Botany and Microbiology Department, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia.

Cadmium (Cd) metal toxicity is a crucial ecological matter that requires immediate efforts to mitigate it. plants were exposed to Cd (0 and 200 µM as CdSO) and foliar application of 24-Epibrassinolide (EBR) (0, 10 and 10 M). The toxic effect of Cd was evident in terms of declined growth and biomass yield, lowered levels of pigment content and chlorophyll fluorescence, and reduction in gas exchange attributes. The levels of proline and glycinebetaine increased in response to Cd treatment. There was an imperative rise in the contents of HO and malondialdehyde as well as electrolyte leakage in the Cd-stressed plants. With the application of EBR, there was a significant replenishment in growth attributes and photosynthetic efficacy. The contents of ROS (reactive oxygen species) and malondialdehyde as well as electrolyte leakage were reduced by the hormone supplementation. Enhancement in the contents of glutathione and ascorbic acid, and the activities of enzymes of the antioxidative defense system and glyoxalase system was recorded in response to Cd as well as hormone treatment. The in situ levels of Cd in roots and shoot were augmented in response to Cd treatment, but were found to be lowered by the EBR application.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/plants9111487DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7694298PMC
November 2020