Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture

, Volume 94, Issue 3, pp 305–311 | Cite as

Toxic effect of nitroesters on plant tissue cultures

  • Radka Podlipná
  • Zuzana Fialová
  • Tomáš VaněkEmail author
Original Paper


Nitroglycerine (NG) is used in manufacture of dynamite, gunpowder, and rocket propellants, and as a therapeutic agent primarily to angina pectoris. Ethylene glycol dinitrate (EGDN) is an explosive ingredient (60–80%) in dynamite along with nitroglycerine (40–20%). Both compounds are pollutants, and due to recalcitrance to biodegradation they persist in the environment. In our study we concentrated on the phytotoxicity of these compounds, looking in particular at their effects on germination, growth and development. We used mustard (Sinapis alba) seedlings, in vitro cultivated regenerants of Juncus inflexus and Phragmites australis and suspension cultures of flax (Linum usitatissimum). The flax cells absorbed NG and transformed it to both dinitroglycerine isomers. By measuring their effect on the length of primary root of white mustard seedlings we demonstrated that the toxicity of these degradation products was lower than the original compound. The phytotoxic effect of EGDN on wetland plant species is described for the first time. High concentrations of EGDN (500 mg l−1 and higher) in the medium induced wilting and browning and subsequent death of reed and rush plants.


Nitroglycerine Ethylene glycol dinitrate Phytotoxicity Phytoremediation 


2, 4-D

Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid




Ethylene glycol dinitrate




Nitroglycerine (trinitroglycerine)




2, 3, 5-Triphenyltetrazolium chloride



This work was supported by projects MPO FT-TA3/118 and MYES 1MO6030


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Radka Podlipná
    • 1
  • Zuzana Fialová
    • 1
  • Tomáš Vaněk
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Laboratory of Plant Biotechnologies, Joint Laboratory of Institute of Experimental Botany AS CR, v.v.i. and Research Institute of Crop Production, v.v.i.Prague 6Czech Republic

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