J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 1985, Vol. 27 ›› Issue (2): -.

• Research Articles •    

The Positive Correlations Between the Activity of Superoxide Dismutase and Dehydration Tolerance in Wheat Seedlings

Wu Ban-gan and Glenn W.Todd   

Abstract: Damage to crops by drought is still a serious problem in large areas of the world. Considerable research has been undertaken to discover the mechanisms of drought injury and drought resistance of plants. However, the critical features of drought injury have not yet been identified. In the past ten years a free radical hypothesis has been suggested to account for subcellular damage caused by severe environments. Superoxide (oxygen radical) is normally produced in hydrated tissues. It is controlled by free radical scavenging reactions. One such scavenger is the enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD). Under water stress, production of excess free radicals may occur in dehydrated plant tissues and this probably damages the membranes by causing peroxidation of the lipid components. So far few studies have been done to determine if drought injury is correlated with the free radical mechanism. In the present study, the SOD activities in wheat seedlings under water stress have been investigated by measuring the photoreduction of nitro blue tetrazolium using a spectrometric method. Meanwhile, the viabilities of wheat seedlings during drying were followed by tetrazolium test. These results provided information on the relationship between SOD activity and the dehydration tolerance of the plant. Results indicated that SOD activity changed with the time after germination. The activity of SOD of 24 h seedlings was 1.9 times higher than those of 72 h seedlings based on fresh weight. SOD activity in shoot was also higher than in root. These results were consistent with the results obtained from rating of the viabilities of seedlings during drying. The 24h seedlings were more tolerant of dehydration than 72 h seedlings and root were more sensitive of drought than shoot. In addition, shoot and root tips showed the higher SOD activities than non-tip region and they also showed a higher survival ability upon dehydration. In dehydration and subsequent rehydration, SOD activity, different from many other enzymes in plants, increased rather than declined during drying. After rehydration SOD activity returned to nearly the original level. Therefore, the positive correlations were found to exist between SOD activity and dehydration tolerance. It is reasonable to suggest that SOD enzyme may play a protective role against damage caused by free radicals which may be produced excessively during dehydration in wheat seedling.

Key words: Water Stress, Biological Free Radical, Superoxide Dismutase, Sca- venging, Membrane Damage, Dehydration Tolerance

Editorial Office, Journal of Integrative Plant Biology, Institute of Botany, CAS
No. 20 Nanxincun, Xiangshan, Beijing 100093, China
Tel: +86 10 6283 6133 Fax: +86 10 8259 2636 E-mail: jipb@ibcas.ac.cn
Copyright © 2022 by the Institute of Botany, the Chinese Academy of Sciences
Online ISSN: 1744-7909 Print ISSN: 1672-9072 CN: 11-5067/Q