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Titanium dioxide nanoparticles improve element uptake, antioxidant properties, and essential oil productivity of Melissa officinalis L. seedlings under in vitro drought stress

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Abstract

In vitro drought stress has a considerable impact on the mass production of active compounds in medicinal plants. Nevertheless, photosynthesis, nutrient uptake, and protein synthesis may be negatively affected by drought, which results in poor growth. Titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2 NPs) have recently been shown to play an important role in increasing nutrient uptake, resistance to various environmental stresses, and better plant growth. Regarding the importance of pharmaceutical metabolites of Melissa officinalis L., this experiment aimed to assess the role of TiO2 NPs in improving physiological responses and phytochemical properties in M. officinalis under in vitro drought stress. For this, two-week-old seedlings were cultured on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium supplemented with 0, 50, and 100 mg L−1 TiO2 NPs and 0, 3, and 6% (w/v) polyethylene glycol (PEG). Two weeks after treatments, a reduction of chlorophyll, protein content, essential elements, and enhancement of H2O2 and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels were seen as a result of drought stress. It was observed that M. officinalis partially responded to the drought by increasing non-enzymatic antioxidants, including phenolics, flavonoids, and anthocyanin and ascorbate peroxidase activity. Moreover, PEG–induced drought stress increased some important essential oil content such as limonene, alpha-pinene, myrcene, γ-3-carene, citral, and carvacrol; however, the results showed that TiO2 NPs not only increased the quantity of essential oils but also led to tolerance to the drought stress by increasing photosynthetic pigments, antioxidant systems, absorption of essential nutrients, and decreasing H2O2 and MDA levels.

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Acknowledgements

This article is extracted from a research project that was funded by Payame Noor University.

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All authors contributed to the study conception and design. Project administration, design of the study, revising, and final approval of the version to be published were carried out by Roya Razavizadeh. Investigation, data curation, formal analysis, and writing—original draft and editing were performed by Fatemeh Adabavazeh. Preparation of plant samples and laboratory materials was performed by Zahra Mosayebi. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Roya Razavizadeh.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Responsible Editor: Gangrong Shi

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Razavizadeh, R., Adabavazeh, F. & Mosayebi, Z. Titanium dioxide nanoparticles improve element uptake, antioxidant properties, and essential oil productivity of Melissa officinalis L. seedlings under in vitro drought stress. Environ Sci Pollut Res 30, 98020–98033 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-023-29384-x

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-023-29384-x

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