Maize seed cryo-storage modifies chlorophyll, carotenoid, protein, aldehyde and phenolics levels during early stages of germination

  • Melissa Arguedas
  • Daviel Gómez
  • Lázaro Hernández
  • Florent Engelmann
  • Raffaele Garramone
  • Inaudis Cejas
  • Lourdes Yabor
  • Marcos Edel Martínez-Montero
  • José Carlos Lorenzo
Short Communication


We recorded the crypreservation effects (direct immersion) on various parameters of early germination stages of maize seeds (0, 7 and 14 days). Percentages of germination; fresh mass of different seedling parts; levels of chlorophyll pigments (a, b); carotenoids; malondialdehyde; other aldehydes; phenolics (cell wall-linked, free) and proteins were determined. Various statistically significant effects of seed exposure to liquid nitrogen (LN) were recorded. Maize seeds did not seem to be affected by LN exposure either visually or regarding fresh weight or germination rate. However, delayed growth was observed in seedlings recovered from cryopreserved seeds. This trend indicated an increase in the effect of seed cryopreservation on growing plants. The most significant effects of LN exposure were recorded in the combined fresh weight of stems and leaves at day 7 of germination and in fresh weights of roots, stems and leaves at day 14. At the biochemical level, numerous indicators varied following LN exposure, but the most significant effects were recorded in carotenoids, malondialdehyde and other aldehyde contents. LN exposure modified 50.0% of indicators in cotyledons, 48.1% in stems and leaves, 38.8% in roots and 11.1% in seeds. LN storage modified 11.1% of the variables measured at day 0 of germination, 37.0% at day 7, and 52.7% at day 14. Field performance of cryostored seed-derived plants should be evaluated to measure the durability of the changes observed.


Biochemical changes Cryopreservation Germplasm preservation Liquid nitrogen Zea mays



This research was supported by the Cuban Ministry for Superior Education. We are grateful to Mrs. Bárbara Valle and Mrs. Julia Martínez for their excellent technical assistance and important experimental suggestions.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interests.

Human and animal rights

This research did not involve experiments with human or animal participants.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study. Additional informed consent was obtained from all individual participants for whom identifying information is included in this article.


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Copyright information

© Franciszek Górski Institute of Plant Physiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Melissa Arguedas
    • 1
  • Daviel Gómez
    • 1
  • Lázaro Hernández
    • 1
  • Florent Engelmann
    • 2
    • 3
  • Raffaele Garramone
    • 4
  • Inaudis Cejas
    • 1
  • Lourdes Yabor
    • 1
  • Marcos Edel Martínez-Montero
    • 1
  • José Carlos Lorenzo
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory for Plant Breeding, Centro de BioplantasUniversidad de Ciego de ÁvilaCiego de ÁvilaCuba
  2. 2.DIADE, IRDMontpellierFrance
  3. 3.IRD, CIRAD, CNRS, University of MontpellierMontpellierFrance
  4. 4.Department of Agricultural SciencesUniversity of Naples Federico IIPorticiItaly

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