Comparative time course action of the foliar applied glycinebetaine, salicylic acid, nitrous oxide, brassinosteroids and spermine in improving drought resistance of rice

M. Farooq*, A. Wahid, D. J. Lee, S. A. Cheema, T. Aziz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)


Worldwide rice productivity is being threatened by increased endeavours of drought stress. Among the visible symptoms of drought stress, hampered water relations and disrupted cellular membrane functions are the most important. Exogenous use of polyamines (PAs), salicylic acid (SA), brassinosteroids (BRs), glycinebetaine (GB) and nitrous oxide (NO) can induce abiotic stresses tolerance in many crops. In this time course study, we appraised the comparative role of all these substances to improve the drought tolerance in rice (Oryza sativa L.) cultivar Super-Basmati. Plants were subjected to drought stress at four leaf stage (4 weeks after emergence) by maintaining soil moisture at 50 % of field capacity. Pre-optimized concentrations of GB (150 mg l-1), SA (100 mg l-1), NO (100 μmol l-1 sodium nitroprusside as NO donor), BR (0.01 μm 24-epibrassinolide) and spermine (Spm; 10 μm) were foliar sprayed at five-leaf stage (5 weeks after emergence). There were two controls both receiving no foliar spray, viz. well watered (CK1) and drought stressed (CK2). There was substantial reduction in allometric response of rice, gas exchange and water relation attributes by drought stress. While drought stress enhanced the H2O2, malondialdehyde (MDA) and relative membrane permeability, foliar spray of all the chemicals improved growth possibly because of the improved carbon assimilation, enhanced synthesis of metabolites and maintenance of tissue water status. Simultaneous reduction in H2O2 and MDA production was also noted in the plants treated with these substances. Drought tolerance was sturdily associated with the greater tissue water potential, increased synthesis of metabolites and enhanced capacity of antioxidant system. Of all the chemicals, foliar spray with Spm was the most effective followed by BR.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)336-345
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Agronomy and Crop Science
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Antioxidants
  • Drought stress
  • MDA
  • Membrane permeability
  • Phenolics
  • Photosynthesis
  • Water relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science

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