Characterization of the response of invitro cultured Myrtus communis L. plants to high concentrations of NaCl

P. Di Cori, S. Lucioli, A. Frattarelli, P. Nota, E. Tel-Or, E. Benyamini, H. Gottlieb, E. Caboni, C. Forni

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20 Scopus citations


Effect of salt stress was examined in invitro shoot cultures of Myrtus communis L. a species of the Mediterranean maquis. To determine the effects of high salt concentrations on myrtle plantlets and contribute toward understanding the mechanisms adopted from this species to counteract soil salinity, invitro rooted shoots were transferred to a liquid culture medium containing 0, 125 or 250mM NaCl for 30 days. After 15 and 30 days of invitro culture, shoot and root growth, chlorosis and necrosis extension, chlorophylls, carotenoids, proline, arginine, cysteine and total sugars content, as well as guaiacol peroxidase (G-POD, EC and ascorbate peroxidase (APX, EC activities were determined. In treated plants shoot and root growth, as well as chlorophyll content, significantly decreased, while carotenoids content was not affected by the NaCl treatment. Among osmolytes, proline did not significantly increase, arginine and cysteine decreased, while total sugars were found to be higher in the treated plants than in the control. Enhancement of G-POD and APX activities was positively related to increasing salt concentrations in the culture media, regardless of the exposure time. Salt-treated plants did not show significant changes in lipid peroxidation or DNA fragmentation after 30 days salt treatment, regardless of the NaCl concentrations applied. The results represent a contribution towards understanding the mechanisms adopted by this species to high salinity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)420-426
Number of pages7
JournalPlant Physiology and Biochemistry
StatePublished - Dec 2013


  • Enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants
  • Invitro culture
  • Myrtle
  • Salt stress


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