Physiological, metabolic, and transcriptional effects of biologically-synthesized silver nanoparticles in turnip (Brassica rapa ssp. rapa L.).

PMID 25471476


Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) use has been increased in recent years, which has potentially antagonistic effects on living organisms, including microbes, human, and plants. The physiological and molecular responses of AgNPs have been reported for several plants; however, the detailed mechanism of action of AgNPs is not known in turnip. Accordingly, the aim of this study was determined to evaluate the impact of AgNPs exposure in turnip seedlings at concentrations up to 10.0 mg/l. The frequency of seed germination decreased with increasing AgNPs concentration. Moreover, while exposure to 1.0 mg/l AgNPs significantly increased plant fresh biomass. The plant growth, biomass, and chlorophyll content were decreased at 5.0 and 10.0 mg/l AgNPs. Anthocyanin, malondialdehyde, and hydrogen peroxide levels were significantly increased with higher concentrations of AgNPs. Furthermore, reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and DNA damage were significantly elevated in plants treated with higher concentrations of AgNPs. The DNA damage potential was confirmed in the experiment of DNA laddering, comet, and TUNEL assays. Consequently, the study confirms the phytotoxic, cytotoxic, and genotoxic potentials induced by AgNPs. Moreover, higher concentrations (5.0 and 10.0 mg/l) of AgNPs significantly induced expression of genes related to glucosinolates and phenolics biosynthesis as well as abiotic and biotic stresses whereas down-regulated the carotenoid gene expressions. To our knowledge, this is the first report to evaluate the physiological, metabolic, and transcriptional responses of turnip to biologically synthesized AgNPs.