Enhancing antioxidant defense system of mung bean with a salicylic acid exogenous application to mitigate cadmium toxicity
Keywords:antioxidant machinery, heavy metal stress, mung bean, photosynthesis, reactive oxygen species, salicylic acid
Cadmium (Cd) accumulation is an emerging environmental hazard and has detrimental effects on plant growth and development. Salicylic acid (SA) is a well-known plant growth regulator that can initiate various molecular pathways to ameliorate Cd toxicity. The experiment was executed to scrutinize the mediatory role of SA to accelerate the defensive mechanism of mung bean in response to Cd stress. Mung bean plants were exposed to 0, 5, 10 and 15 mg Cd kg-1 of soil. Exogenous application of SA 0, 10-6 and 10-3 M was added prior flowering. Results exhibited that Cd stress considerably reduced the growth-related attributes i.e. shoot length, root length, fresh and dry biomass, total soluble protein, total amino acids, relative water contents and photosynthetic pigments. Cadmium stress showed a significant increase in antioxidants levels such as peroxidase (POD), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), ascorbic acid (AsA), and catalase (CAT) and promoted the accumulation of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and malondialdehyde (MDA) contents. However, exogenously applied SA significantly improved plant biomass and photosynthetic pigments under Cd stress. Moreover, SA improved the defensive system by enhancing antioxidants’ activities under the increasing concentration of Cd stress. Furthermore, SA reduced the Cd uptake, membrane damage and, H2O2 and MDA accumulation. The study's findings concluded that exogenous-applied SA enhanced plant growth, promoted the antioxidant activities, and reduced the oxidative damage in mung bean seedlings under Cd stress.
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