Elisaveta Kirova, Irina Moskova, Tania Kartseva, Konstantina Kocheva

Comparison of physiological effects of osmotic stress on two wheat genotypes

Abstract Revealing stress tolerance mechanisms in plants would contribute to the selection of crop varieties with a higher capacity for surviving in unfavourable environments. In this regard, it is essential to identify possible physiological features that might be beneficial for increasing plant resistance to stress. Two contrasting common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cultivars with different drought tolerance were subjected to 48 h treatment with 20% polyethylene glycol 8000, which provoked an extra degree of osmotic and oxidative stress as well as distinct physiological responses. Better water retention capacity in leaves and lesser extent of membrane injury found in cultivar ‘Guinness’ compared to cultivar ‘Niki’ correlated with increased osmotic adjustment by accumulating higher amounts of proline and higher antioxidant scavenging capacity in the former. Compared to soluble sugars and total free amino acids, proline contributed to a greater extent to preserving leaf water. It was speculated that such a combination of features would set a genotypic advantage for this cultivar, which could also determine better performance under drought conditions in the field.

Doi https://doi.org/10.35513/Botlit.2021.2.3

Keywords antioxidant capacity, membrane injury, proline, reactive oxygen species, Triticum aestivum

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