The newly synthesized plant growth regulator S-methylmethionine salicylate may provide protection against high salinity in wheat

Abstract

High salinity is one of the major environmental factors limiting the productivity of crop species worldwide. Improving the stress tolerance of cultivated plants and thus increasing crop yields in an environmentally friendly way is a crucial task in agriculture. In the present work the ability of a new derivative, S-methylmethionine-salicylate (MMS), to improve the salt tolerance of wheat plants was tested parallel with its related compounds salicylic acid and S-methylmethionine. The results show that while these compounds are harmful at relatively high concentration (0.5 mM), they may provide protection against high salinity at lower (0.1 mM) concentration. This was confirmed by gas exchange, chlorophyll content and chlorophyll-a fluorescence induction measurements. While osmotic adjustment probably plays a critical role in the improved salt tolerance, neither Na or K transport from the roots to the shoots nor proline synthesis are the main factors in the tolerance induced by the compounds tested. MMS, S-methylmethionine and Na-salicylate had different effects on flavonol biosynthesis. It was also shown that salt treatment had a substantial influence on the SA metabolism in wheat roots and leaves. Present results suggest that the investigated compounds can be used to improve salt tolerance in plants.

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Acknowledgements

This work was funded by the National Research, Development and Innovation Office (K 108838).

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Correspondence to Tibor Janda.

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Janda, T., Khalil, R., Tajti, J. et al. The newly synthesized plant growth regulator S-methylmethionine salicylate may provide protection against high salinity in wheat. Plant Growth Regul 85, 305–315 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10725-018-0398-0

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Keywords

  • Gene expression
  • Osmotic adjustment
  • Salicylic acid
  • Salt stress
  • S-methylmethionine
  • Triticum aestivum L