The effect of seedling chilling on glutathione content, catalase and peroxidase activity in Brassica oleracea L. var. italica

Renata Wojciechowska, Ewa J. Hanus-Fajerska, Anna Kołton, Iwona Kamińska, Aneta Grabowska, Edward Kunicki


The study was designed to determine the possible relationship between Brassica oleracea var. italica seedlings stored at 2°C in the dark for seven and fourteen days, respectively, and the level of certain antioxidant parameters in particular organs. A parallel objective of the experiment was to determine if the reaction of seedlings to low temperature might be persistent in fully developed plants until harvest time. After 14 days of chilling a significant increase in the glutathione content was observed in the seedling leaves in comparison to the non-chilled plants. During vegetation in field conditions this effect was maintained in leaves up to the stage of formation of flower buds. At harvest the highest content of glutathione was demonstrated in broccoli heads, obtained from plants, which were previously chilled in the seedling phase for two weeks. Peroxidase activity in broccoli seedlings increased each year of the three-year study due to the duration of the cooling time, whereas in the case of catalase the changes were not so distinct. At harvest time the activity of both enzymes in the leaves and flower buds fluctuated according to the particular year of study.


broccoli; Brassica oleracea L. var. italica; chilling stress; development stage

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