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Effect of NaCI and supplemental calcium on growth parameters and nitrate reductase activity in maize

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Author(s): Elżbieta Sacała | Agnieszka Biegun | Anna Demczuk | Edward Grzyś

Journal: Acta Societatis Botanicorum Poloniae
ISSN 0001-6977

Volume: 74;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 119;
Date: 2005;
Original page

Keywords: salinity | NaCl | calcium | potassium | nitrate reductase | maize

ABSTRACT
In this study, investigated were the effects of NaCl (60 mmol/dm-3) and NaCl supplemented with different salts (5 mmol/dm-3 CaCl2, CaSO4, CaCO3, KCl), on growth of two maize varieties (Cyrkon and Limko). After 7 days of cultivation in nutrient solution the growth response to salinity of both maize varieties was similar. NaCl led to a dramatic decrease in growth of plants (approx. 50% reduction in fresh and dry weight of root, and 70% reduction in fresh weight of shoot). Addition of extra Ca2+ or K+ to nutrient solution containing NaCl did not definitely improve the growth parameters of maize. However, among the tested salts, CaCl2 had a beneficial visual effect on maize seedlings. In other cases the plants showed noticeable symptoms of salt damage. In long term exposure to salinity (two weeks) growth of Cyrkon was more inhibited than Limko. Comparison of growth responses in short-term exposure to salinity (7 days) with long-term (14 days) showed that in Cyrkon variety the negative effects of NaCl were intensified and addition of CaCl2 to salinized solution had not positive effects on growth. On the contrary, in Limko variety, there was a significant improvement in growth (especially in root dry weight). This fact indicates that during longer exposure to salinity Limko was able to adapt to those conditions. Salinity caused a significant decrease in leaf nitrate reductase activity (60% and 30% reduction respectively in Limko and Cyrkon). Addition of CaCl2 to salinized nutrient solution resulted in greater enzyme inhibition in Cyrkon (50% decline in relation to plants grown under sole NaCl), and 30% increase in Limko. Inhibition of nitrate reductase activity did not cause a decrease in concentration of soluble protein in maize leaves.

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