Plant Growth Regulation

, Volume 77, Issue 1, pp 43–56 | Cite as

Protective effects of hydrogen-rich water on the photosynthetic apparatus of maize seedlings (Zea mays L.) as a result of an increase in antioxidant enzyme activities under high light stress

  • Xiaonan Zhang
  • Xueqiang Zhao
  • Zuoqiang Wang
  • Wenbiao Shen
  • Xiaoming Xu
Original paper

Abstract

Hydrogen gas (H2) is an endogenous gaseous molecule in plants. Although it is recently described as an important bio-regulator in plants, the role of H2 in high light stress amelioration is largely unknown. This study investigated the mechanism of hydrogen-rich water (HRW)-mediated enhancement of tolerance against high light stress of maize (Zea mays L.) seedlings. Maize seedlings were supplied with different concentrations of HRW and its effects on the plant growth, the chlorophyll fluorescence parameters, the activities of several antioxidative enzymes such as superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), ascorbate peroxidase (APX) and glutathione reductase (GR), the levels of superoxide radical (O2 ), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and the degrees of the oxidative damage to the membrane lipids under high light stress were examined. With respect to samples treated with high light stress alone, exogenous H2 pretreatments differentially attenuated the damage of photosynthetic apparatus by high irradiance. Further results showed that concentration-dependent effects of HRW were shown in stressed maize seedlings. Exogenous H2 supplement could elevate the activities of antioxidative enzymes, including SOD, CAT, APX, and GR. These results were confirmed by the alleviation of oxidative damage, as indicated by a decrease of the level of O2 and H2O2 as well as the content of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances. Taken together, our results suggested that exogenous H2 treatment could protect the photosynthetic apparatus from photo-damage through mitigating photo-oxidation enabled by a high level of antioxidative enzyme activities.

Keywords

Hydrogen-rich water (HRW) Maize seedlings High light stress Antioxidant enzymes 

Abbreviations

ANOVA

One-way analysis of variance

APX

Ascorbate peroxidase

ASC

Ascorbic acid

CAT

Catalase

Chl

Chlorophyll

DAB

3,3′-Diaminobenzidinc

DI/RC

The specific energy fluxes for dissipation per reaction center

EDTA

Ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid

Fo

Initial fluorescence intensity

Fm

Maximal fluorescence intensity

Fv

Variable fluorescence in dark-adapted leaves

Fv/Fm

Maximum quantum yield of PSII photochemistry

FW

Fresh weight

GR

Glutathione reductase

H2

Hydrogen gas

H2O2

Hydrogen peroxide

HL

High light

HRW

Hydrogen-rich water

NADPH

Reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate

NBT

Nitro blue tetrazolium

O2

Superoxide radical

OEC

Oxygen-evolving complex

PIABS

Performance index on an absorption basis

Pn

Net Photosynthetic rate

PPFD

Photosynthetic photon flux density

PSII

Photosystem II

RC

Reaction center

RC/CS

The amount of active PSII reaction centers per excited cross section

ROS

Reactive oxygen species

SOD

Superoxide dismutase

TBARS

Thiobarbituric acid reactive substances

Vj

The relative fluorescence intensity of J-step

1−Vj

The efficiency with which a trapped exciton can move an electron into the electron transport chain further than Q A

Vk

The variable fluorescence at 300 μs

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiaonan Zhang
    • 1
  • Xueqiang Zhao
    • 1
  • Zuoqiang Wang
    • 1
  • Wenbiao Shen
    • 1
  • Xiaoming Xu
    • 1
  1. 1.College of Life SciencesNanjing Agricultural UniversityNanjingChina

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