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Exogenous application of black cumin (Nigella sativa) seed extract improves maize growth under chromium (Cr) stress

Allah Ditta, H.M., Aziz, A., Hussain, M.K., Mehboob, N., Hussain, M., Farooq, S. and Azhar, M.F. (2021) Exogenous application of black cumin (Nigella sativa) seed extract improves maize growth under chromium (Cr) stress. International Journal of Phytoremediation . pp. 1-13.

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Accumulation of non-essential heavy metals like chromium (Cr) is among major abiotic stresses, which adversely affect crop growth. Hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)] is the most dangerous form negatively affecting the growth and productivity of crops. This study evaluated the role of black cumin extracts (BCE) in improving growth and productivity of maize genotypes under different concentrations of Cr(VI). Two maize genotypes (“Neelum” and “P1543”) were grown under 0, 4, 8 and 12 mg Cr(VI) kg−1 concentrations. The BCE was applied as foliar spray at three concentrations (0, 10 and 20%) at 25 and 45 days after sowing. Increasing Cr(VI) concentration significantly (p < 0.05) reduced seed germination, root and allometric traits, gas exchange attributes and relative water contents of tested genotypes. Hybrid maize genotype better tolerated tested Cr(VI) concentrations than synthetic genotype with lower Cr accumulation and better allometric and gas exchange traits. Exogenous application of 20% BCE proved effective in lowering the adverse effects of Cr(VI) toxicity on maize genotypes. It is concluded that 20% BCE could be used to improve maize performance through better allometric and gas exchange traits under different Cr(VI) concentrations. Nonetheless, actual mechanisms involved in improved Cr(VI)-tolerance of maize with BCE application must be explored.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Veterinary Medicine
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
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