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PLoS One. 2017 Apr 27;12(4):e0176357. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0176357. eCollection 2017.

Morpho-physiological analysis of tolerance to aluminum toxicity in rice varieties of North East India.

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Plant Molecular Biotechnology Laboratory, Department of Life Science and Bioinformatics, Assam University, Silchar, INDIA.


Aluminum (Al) is the third most abundant metal in earth crust, whose chemical form is mainly dependent on soil pH. The most toxic form of Al with respect to plants is Al3+, which exists in soil pH <5. Acidic soil significantly limits crop production mainly due to Al3+ toxicity worldwide, impacting approximately 50% of the world's arable land (in North-Eastern India 80% soil are acidic). Al3+ toxicity in plants ensues root growth inhibition leading to less nutrient and water uptake impacting crop productivity as a whole. Rice is one of the chief grains which constitutes the staple food of two-third of the world population including India and is not untouched by Al3+ toxicity. Al contamination is a critical constraint to plant production in agricultural soils of North East India. 24 indigenous Indica rice varieties (including Badshahbhog as tolerant check and Mashuri as sensitive check) were screened for Al stress tolerance in hydroponic plant growth system. Results show marked difference in growth parameters (relative growth rate, Root tolerance index, fresh and dry weight of root) of rice seedlings due to Al (100 μM) toxicity. Al3+ uptake and lipid peroxidation level also increased concomitantly under Al treatment. Histochemical assay were also performed to elucidate uptake of aluminum, loss of membrane integrity and lipid peroxidation, which were found to be more in sensitive genotypes at higher Al concentration. This study revealed that aluminum toxicity is a serious harmful problem for rice crop productivity in acid soil. Based on various parameters studied it's concluded that Disang is a comparatively tolerant variety whereas Joymati a sensitive variety. Western blot hybridization further strengthened the claim, as it demonstrated more accumulation of Glutathione reductase (GR) protein in Disang rice variety than Joymati under stressed condition. This study also observed that the emergence of lethal toxic symptoms occurs only after 48h irrespective of the dose used in the study.

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