Plant Growth Regulation

, Volume 75, Issue 3, pp 783–792 | Cite as

Biochemical, physiological and isotopic responses to natural product p-hydroxybenzoic acid in Cocksfoot (Dactylis glomerata L.)

  • M. Iftikhar Hussain
  • Manuel J. Reigosa
  • Abdullah J. Al-Dakheel
Original Paper


The present study was conducted to evaluate the role of natural compound p-hydroxybenzoic acid (pHBA) on physiological, biochemical and isotopic responses of Dactylis glomerata L. Application of pHBA in the range 0.5–1.5 mM reduced the leaf fresh/dry biomass, shoot/root length, relative water content and leaf osmotic potential of D. glomerata. pHBA decreased the photosynthetic efficiency and quantum yield of photosystem II photochemistry in D. glomerata seedlings following treatment at all concentrations. Photochemical and non-photochemical fluorescence quenching were reduced after treatment with 1.5 mM pHBA. Carbon isotope composition ratio in D. glomerata leaves was significantly less negative following treatment with pHBA than the control. Carbon isotope discrimination value was declined by pHBA. The leaf protein content was lower after treatment with 1.5 mM pHBA. Our results suggest that pHBA possesses allelopathic potential against D. glomerata and this study provide new insights into the physiological, biochemical and isotopic action mechanism of pHBA.


Allelochemical stress Carbon isotope discrimination Dactylis glomerata Growth Leaf water relations p-hydroxybenzoic acid Physiological responses 



We thank Dr. Aldo Barreiro, Carlos Bolano and Paula Lorenzo with field and laboratory assistance. We are grateful to Jesús Estévez Sío and Jorge Millos for their technical assistance with isotope ratio mass spectroscopy. We thank Dr. Nuria Pedrol for valuable help in leaf osmotic potential measurement and statistical analysis. We are highly grateful to Dr. Ian McCann (ICBA, Dubai, UAE) for help in English grammar correction. We are extremely thankful to editor and anonymous reviewers for the critical and valuable comments that have greatly improved the article.

Supplementary material

10725_2014_9981_MOESM1_ESM.xls (42 kb)
Fig. S1 Changes in carbon budget (C%) in leaves of Dactylis glomerata L. following exposure to p-hydroxybenzoic acid (pHBA) at 0 (control), 0.1, 0.5, 1.0, 1.5 mM concentration. (XLS 42 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Iftikhar Hussain
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Manuel J. Reigosa
    • 1
  • Abdullah J. Al-Dakheel
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Plant Biology and Soil ScienceUniversity of VigoVigoSpain
  2. 2.Laboratoire Chrono-Environment UMR CNRS 6249University of Franche ComtéMontbéliard CedexFrance
  3. 3.International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA)DubaiUAE

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