Effects of Chilling Stress on Morphological, Physiological, and Biochemical Attributes of Silage Corn Genotypes during Seedling Establishment

Wu, Jiaxu and Nadeem, Muhammad and Galagedara, Lakshman and Thomas, Raymond Horatio and Cheema, Mumtaz (2022) Effects of Chilling Stress on Morphological, Physiological, and Biochemical Attributes of Silage Corn Genotypes during Seedling Establishment. Plants, 11 (9). ISSN 2223-7747

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Chilling stress is one of the major abiotic stresses which hinder seedling emergence and growth. Herein, we investigated the effects of chilling/low temperature stress on the morphological, physiological, and biochemical attributes of two silage corn genotypes during the seedling establishment phase. The experiment was conducted in a growth chamber, and silage corn seedlings of Yukon-R and A4177G-RIB were grown at optimum temperature up to V3 stage and then subjected to five temperature regimes (25 °C as control, 20 °C, 15 °C, 10 °C, and 5 °C) for 5 days. After the temperature treatment, the morphological, physiological, and biochemical parameters were recorded. Results indicated that temperatures of 15 °C and lower significantly affected seedling growth, photosynthesis system, reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation, and antioxidant enzyme activities. Changes in seedlings’ growth parameters were in the order of 25 °C > 20 °C > 15 °C > 10 °C > 5 °C, irrespective of genotypes. The chlorophyll content, photosynthetic rate, and maximal photochemical efficiency of PS-II (Fv/Fm) were drastically decreased under chilling conditions. Moreover, chilling stress induced accumulation of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)and malonaldehyde (MDA) contents. Increased proline content and enzymatic antioxidants, including superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), and ascorbate peroxide (APX), were found to alleviate oxidative damage under chilling stress. However, the genotype of Yukon-R exhibited better adaption to chilling stress than A4177G3-RIB. Yukon-R showed significantly higher proline content and enzymatic antioxidant activities than A4177G3-RIB under severe chilling conditions (temperature ≤ 10 °C). Similarly, Yukon-R expressed low temperature-induced ROS accumulation. Furthermore, the interaction effects were found between temperature treatment and genotype on the ROS accumulation, proline content and antioxidant enzyme activities. In summary, the present study indicated that Yukon-R has shown better adaptation and resilience against chilling temperature stress, and therefore could be considered a potential candidate genotype to be grown in the boreal climate.

Item Type: Article
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/15551
Item ID: 15551
Additional Information: Memorial University Open Access Author's Fund
Keywords: antioxidant, cold stress tolerance, plant growth, photosynthesis, root morphology, silage corn
Department(s): Grenfell Campus > School of Science and the Environment
Date: 29 April 2022
Date Type: Publication
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11091217
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