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Sustainable production of bread wheat under terminal heat stress: an investigation of foliar selenium-mediated biochemical regulations in association with yield

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Abstract

High temperature stress during reproductive stages of wheat is a leading constraint in achieving food security. The objectives of study were to investigate heat sensitivity of terminal stages of wheat, to optimize foliar selenium dose, to boost nonenzymatic antioxidants and to determine correlation of these nonenzymatic antioxidants with yield and quality attributes of wheat crop. The field experiment was conducted for two consecutive years at agronomic research area, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan. It was laid out in a randomized complete block design under split arrangement, and treatments were replicated thrice. Main plot factor comprised of heat imposition treatments; H0 = Control; H1 = Heat from spike to grain filling; H2 = Heat from flowering to grain filling while in subplots doses of foliar selenium were maintained; Se0 = Control (water spray); Se25 = 25 mg L−1; Se50 = 50 mg L−1; Se75 = 75 mg L−1 and Se100 = 100 mg L−1. Impact of H1 was more damaging compared to H2 and H0 for all response variables. Higher levels of proline, phenolics and leaf selenium were recorded with foliar spray of selenium either at 75 or at 100 mg L−1 under H0, whereas under H1 and H2, significantly higher responses were observed with 100 mg L−1 selenium for these traits. Increases in leaf chlorophyll and grain protein contents were statistically alike with 75 and 100 mg L−1 selenium; while in case of 1000-grain weight, harvest index and grain yield three levels of foliar selenium (50, 75 and 100 mg L−1) performed equally well under all the three heat stress treatments. Moreover, strong positive and significant associations of proline, phenolics, leaf selenium and chlorophyll were measured with yield of wheat. Conclusively, more harmful impacts were recorded under H1 compared to H2 and H0; while 75 mg L−1 Se proved more beneficial under H0 and 100 mg L−1 Se under H1 and H2. Strong associations of biochemical and agronomic traits were observed.

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Data availability

All relevant data have been provided. Any further data required will be made available on the request of reviewers. The datasets generated and/or analyzed during the current study are available in the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan repository (http://prr.hec.gov.pk/jspui/handle/123456789/9478).

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Acknowledgements

We gratefully acknowledge the economic support provided by Higher Education Commission of Pakistan for the conduct of research work. We applaud the role of Analytical Laboratory, Department of Agronomy, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan, in facilitating various analytical works related to research. We are highly obliged to the Medicinal Plants Biochemistry Laboratory, Department of Biochemistry, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan, for technical support regarding record of biochemical attributes. Authors acknowledge the technical services of ‘Analytical Laboratory, Department of Agronomy’ and ‘Medicinal Plants Biochemistry Laboratory, Department of Biochemistry,’ ‘University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan.’

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The study was financially supported through Indigenous Scholarship awarded by Higher Education Commission of Pakistan.

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MS  planned and conducted research, wrote the manuscript, collected and analyzed data. MFS supervised the planning and conduct of research, write up of manuscript, data collection and analyses. AS helped in statistical analysis of data, MS facilitated in the recording of biochemical parameters, MASR provided various reagents used for record of biochemical attributes, SAA supervised the whole research work and AH helped in physical conduct of experiment under field conditions.

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Correspondence to Muhammad Farrukh Saleem.

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Communicated by Tibor Janda.

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Shahid, M., Saleem, M.F., Saleem, A. et al. Sustainable production of bread wheat under terminal heat stress: an investigation of foliar selenium-mediated biochemical regulations in association with yield. CEREAL RESEARCH COMMUNICATIONS 52, 671–681 (2024). https://doi.org/10.1007/s42976-023-00416-z

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