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Title: Evaluation of water binding, seed coat permeability and germination characteristics of wheat seeds equilibrated at different relative humidities
Authors: Chatterjee, Nabamita
Nagarajan, Shantha
Keywords: Seed water binding
Desiccation tolerance
Sorption isotherms
Triticum aestivum L, Wheat seeds
Issue Date: Aug-2006
Publisher: CSIR
Abstract: The relative binding of seed water and seed coat membrane stability were measured in two contrasting wheat (Triticum aestivum L) varieties, HDR 77 (drought-tolerant) and HD 2009 (susceptible) using seed water sorption isotherms, electrical conductivity (EC) of leachates and desorption-absorption isotherms. Analysis of sorption isotherm at 25°C showed that the seeds of HDR 77 had significantly higher number of strong binding sites, with correspondingly greater amount of seed water as strongly bound water, as compared to HD 2009. Total number of binding sites was also higher in HDR 77 than HD 2009, which explained the better desiccation tolerance and higher capacity to bind water in seeds of HDR 77. EC of seed leachate in both varieties did not change with respect to change in equilibrium relative humidity (RH), indicating the general seed coat membrane stability of wheat seeds. However, absolute conductivity values were higher for HD 2009, showing its relatively porous seed coat membrane. Significantly lower area enclosed by the desorption-absorption isotherm loop in HDR 77, as compared to HD 2009 also indicated the greater membrane integrity of HDR 77. Germination and seedling vigour of HD 2009 were reduced when equilibrated over very low and very high RH. In contrast, germination and vigour in HDR 77 were maintained high, except at very high RH, indicating again its desiccation tolerance. Thus, the study demonstrated the relative drought tolerance of HDR 77, on the basis of seed water-binding characteristics and seed membrane stability. Seed membrane stability as measured by seed leachate conductivity or as area under dehydration-rehydration loop may be used as a preliminary screening test for drought tolerance in wheat.
Page(s): 233-238
ISSN: 0301-1208
Source:IJBB Vol.43(4) [August 2006]

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