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Bioelectromagnetics. 2011 Sep;32(6):474-84. doi: 10.1002/bem.20656. Epub 2011 Mar 4.

Enhancement of germination, growth, and photosynthesis in soybean by pre-treatment of seeds with magnetic field.

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School of Life Sciences, Devi Ahilya University, Indore, India.


Experiments were conducted to study the effect of static magnetic fields on the seeds of soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr. var: JS-335) by exposing the seeds to different magnetic field strengths from 0 to 300 mT in steps of 50 mT for 30, 60, and 90 min. Treatment with magnetic fields improved germination-related parameters like water uptake, speed of germination, seedling length, fresh weight, dry weight and vigor indices of soybean seeds under laboratory conditions. Improvement over untreated control was 5-42% for speed of germination, 4-73% for seedling length, 9-53% for fresh weight, 5-16% for dry weight, and 3-88% and 4-27% for vigor indices I and II, respectively. Treatment of 200 mT (60 min) and 150 mT (60 min), which were more effective than others in increasing most of the seedling parameters, were further explored for their effect on plant growth, leaf photosynthetic efficiency, and leaf protein content under field conditions. Among different growth parameters, leaf area, and leaf fresh weight showed maximum enhancement (more than twofold) in 1-month-old plants. Polyphasic chlorophyll a fluorescence (OJIP) transients from magnetically treated plants gave a higher fluorescence yield at the J-I-P phase. The total soluble protein map (SDS-polyacrylamide gel) of leaves showed increased intensities of the bands corresponding to a larger subunit (53 KDa) and smaller subunit (14 KDa) of Rubisco in the treated plants. We report here the beneficial effect of pre-sowing magnetic treatment for improving germination parameters and biomass accumulation in soybean.

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