Comparative study of the effect of salt stress, Alternaria alternata attack or combined stress on the Cakile maritima growth and physiological performance

  • Arbia CHALBI Center of Biotechnology of Borj Cedria (CBBC), Laboratory of Extremophile Plants, P. O. Box 901, 2050, Hammam-Lif (TN)
  • Besma SGHAIER-HAMMAMI Center of Biotechnology of Borj Cedria (CBBC), Laboratory of Extremophile Plants, P. O. Box 901, 2050, Hammam-Lif; Laboratoire LR13AGR01, Université De Carthage, Institut National Agronomique de Tunisie, Tunis;Agroforestry and Plant Biochemistry and Proteomics Research Group, Dpt. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Cordoba-CeiA3, Cordoba (TN)
  • Narjes BAAZAOUI King Khalid University, Abha 61421 (SA)
  • Sofiene B.M. HAMMAMI Laboratoire LR13AGR01, Université De Carthage, Institut National Agronomique de Tunisie, Tunis (TN)
  • Hatem BEN-JOUIRA Center of Biotechnology of Borj Cedria (CBBC), Laboratory of Extremophile Plants, P. O. Box 901, 2050, Hammam-Lif (TN)
  • Pedro GARCÍA-CAPARRÓS Department of Superior School Engineering, University of Almeria, Ctra. Sacramento s/n, La Cañada de San Urbano, 04120 Almería (ES)
  • Naceur DJÉBALI Centre of Biotechnology of Borj Cedria (CBBC), Laboratory of Bioactive Substances, P. O. Box 901, 2050, Hammam-Lif (TN)
  • Imed REGAYA Center of Biotechnology of Borj Cedria (CBBC), Laboratory of Extremophile Plants, P. O. Box 901, 2050, Hammam-Lif; University of Carthage, Higher Institute of Environmental Sciences and Technologies, Borj Cedria (TN)
  • Ahmed DEBEZ Center of Biotechnology of Borj Cedria (CBBC), Laboratory of Extremophile Plants, P. O. Box 901, 2050, Hammam-Lif (TN)
  • Jesús V. JORRÍN-NOVO Agroforestry and Plant Biochemistry and Proteomics Research Group, Dpt. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Cordoba-CeiA3, Cordoba (ES)
  • Chedly ABDELLY Center of Biotechnology of Borj Cedria (CBBC), Laboratory of Extremophile Plants, P. O. Box 901, 2050, Hammam-Lif (TN)
Keywords: Alternaria alternata, Cakile maritima, combined stress, fungal attack alleviation, salt stress


Cakile maritima is a halophytic plant model that is well known by its ability to tolerate high salt concentrations. Salinity was reported to improve the tolerance of halophytes to several abiotic stresses; however, the involvement of salt in the tolerance to biotic stress is still scant. In the present work, the effect of salt on C. maritima responses towards the pathogenic Alternaria alternata was investigated. For that, C. maritima seeds were germinated for four weeks. Plants were then divided into four groups: i) Plants irrigated with salt (200mM NaCl); ii) Plants infested by fungus; iii) Plants irrigated with salt and infested by fungus and finally control plants (0mM NaCl, without inoculation). Our results showed that upon salt stress or fungal attack, plants reduced biomass production, hydration status and photosynthetic performance which were associated with a decrease in the gas exchange and chlorophyll fluorescence parameters, with a more pronounced effect upon fungal attack. However, under combined stress, a significant increase of these parameters was noticed, with a level close to that of control. Concerning nutrient contents, K, Zn, Fe, Cu and Mg decreased in the C. maritima leaves exposed to both stresses applied individually. In contrast, all these nutrients were increased in plants grown under combined stress. Taken together, we can conclude that plants grown under combined stresses had better growth rate and physiological performance compared to all other treated plants, and that salt may be the key in improving the C. maritima ability to tolerate fungal attack.


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How to Cite
CHALBI, A., SGHAIER-HAMMAMI, B., BAAZAOUI, N., HAMMAMI, S. B., BEN-JOUIRA, H., GARCÍA-CAPARRÓS, P., DJÉBALI, N., REGAYA, I., DEBEZ, A., JORRÍN-NOVO, J. V., & ABDELLY, C. (2021). Comparative study of the effect of salt stress, Alternaria alternata attack or combined stress on the Cakile maritima growth and physiological performance. Notulae Botanicae Horti Agrobotanici Cluj-Napoca, 49(3), 12446.
Research Articles
DOI: 10.15835/nbha49312446