, Volume 56, Issue 2, pp 478–486 | Cite as

Induction of water deficit tolerance in wheat due to exogenous application of plant growth regulators: membrane stability, water relations and photosynthesis

  • S. K. DwivediEmail author
  • A. Arora
  • V. P. Singh
  • G. P. Singh
Original paper


Our experiment was carried out in order to explore effects of plant growth regulators (PGR; thidiazuron, paclobutrazol, and ascorbic acid) on physiological traits of wheat genotypes under water surplus and deficit conditions. Study revealed that relative water content, membrane stability index, chlorophyll content, photosynthetic rate (PN), and maximal quantum yield of PSII improved with PGRs application across the genotypes both under irrigation and water stress. The response of HD 2733 genotype was more positive toward PGRs treatment as compared to other genotypes under water stress. Higher PN and chlorophyll contents were observed in HD 2987 followed by C 306 genotype under water-stress conditions. Moreover, Rubisco small subunit (SSU) expression was lower in wheat genotypes under water stress as compared to irrigated conditions. Application of PGRs led to upregulation of SSU under water stress, while no significant change was found in Rubisco level and activity under irrigated condition in dependence on PGRs treatments. Yield-related traits showed also significant reduction under water-stress conditions, while application of PGRs enhanced the yield and its components. Results indicated that the PGRs exhibited a positive interaction and synergetic effect on water stressed wheat plants in terms of photosynthetic machinery and yield.

Additional key words

chlorophyll fluorescence drought gas exchange senescence yield 



abscisic acid


ascorbic acid


base pair




days after sowing


maximal quantum yield of PSII photochemistry


harvest index




plant growth regulators


small subunit of Rubisco




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Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© The Institute of Experimental Botany 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. K. Dwivedi
    • 2
    Email author
  • A. Arora
    • 1
  • V. P. Singh
    • 1
  • G. P. Singh
    • 3
  1. 1.Division of Plant PhysiologyIndian Agricultural Research InstituteNew DelhiIndia
  2. 2.Division of Crop ResearchICAR Research complex for Eastern RegionPatna, BiharIndia
  3. 3.Division of Genetics and Plant BreedingIndian Agricultural Research InstituteNew DelhiIndia

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