The effect of triazine - and urea - type herbicides on photosynthetic apparatus in cucumber leaves

Jolanta Jerzykiewicz, Grażyna Kłobus


About a half of the herbicides used at present in agnculture inhibit the light reactions in photosynthesis. Triazines and phenylureas shut down the photosynthetic process in susceptible plants by binding to specific sites within the plants photosystem II (PS II) complex. Both of them bind at the QB site on the Dl protein of PS II, and prevent the transport of electrons between the primary electron acceptor Q and the plastoquinone (PQ). Herbicides can be highly toxic to human and animal health (triazines are possible human carcinogens). Their indiscriminate use has serious environmental implications, for example pollution of soil and water. We compare two heibicides to investigate the one of lowest environmental toxicity but of high toxicity to weeds.


photosystem II; chlorophyll fluorescence; cucumber; herbicide; simazine; linuron; net photosynthetic rate; toxicity

Full Text: