1021-4437/02/4905- $27.00 © 2002
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology, Vol. 49, No. 5, 2002, pp. 622–627. Translated from Fiziologiya Rastenii, Vol. 49, No. 5, 2002, pp. 697–702.
Original Russian Text Copyright © 2002 by Lukatkin.
During early development, chilling-sensitive plants
are frequently subjected to the action of low positive
temperatures, which results in the disturbance of phys-
iological processes, growth retardation, and, ﬁnally, in
the lower plant productivity [1, 2]. However, the initial
stages of the cold injury of these plants are still not
studied, which interferes with the elucidation of the
strategy of their cold adaptation to low temperatures
and the elaboration of practical approaches for improv-
ing their tolerance.
One of the earliest plant-cell responses to chilling is
an enhanced lipid peroxidation [3–5]. A hypothesis was
recently put forward that the chilling of chilling-sensi-
tive plants results in oxidative stress in their cells. It is
triggered by ROS and results in various chilling injuries
[6, 7]. In this connection, it was supposed that, at low
temperatures, the antioxidant systems of chilling-sensi-
tive plants could not cope with the accumulation of
ROS and their peroxide products, which is an initial
stage of chilling injury .
Earlier, we postulated that the superoxide anion rad-
ical contributes signiﬁcantly to the induction of cold
damage . The role of this radical in the low-temper-
ature-induced inhibition of photosynthesis in chilling-
sensitive but not cold-tolerant plants was noted [9–11].
At the same time, the effect of other ROS on the devel-
opment of cold damage was demonstrated [10, 12].
Peroxides, which are produced with the involvement of
and other ROS, play an important role in the cold
damage [7, 13, 14].
In this work, we set out to do the following: (1)
study the effects of chilling of variable durations on the
generation of superoxide anion radical ( ) and perox-
ides in several plant species differing in their sensitivity
to low temperatures and (2) evaluate the interrelation
between ROS formation and chilling injury as evalu-
ated by POL acceleration.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
Seven–eleven-day-old seedlings of the following
crops listed in order of increasing cold tolerance were
used: cucumber (
L., cv. Vyaznikovskii
37), maize (
L., cv. Bukovinskii 2, green and
etiolated seedlings), millet (
Bystroe), and potato (
Nevskii, etiolated sprouts).
Plants were grown in a laboratory in vessels ﬁlled
with soil (2 kg of sandy-loam degraded chernozem) at
C, at an illuminance of 5 klx from luminescent
lamps (Lisma, Russia), a day length of 12 h, soil mois-
Contribution of Oxidative Stress to the Development
of Cold-Induced Damage to Leaves of Chilling-Sensitive Plants:
1. Reactive Oxygen Species Formation during Plant Chilling
A. S. Lukatkin
Department of Botany and Plant Physiology, Ogarev State University, Bol’shevistskaya ul. 68, Saransk, 430000 Russia;
Received June 6, 2001
—Changes in the levels of superoxide anion radical and total peroxides were studied immediately
after the chilling of 7–11-day-old seedlings of maize (
L.), cucumber (
L.), and etiolated potato (
L.) shoots at 2
C for 1–24 h and one day
after 24-h chilling. A short-term (1 h) chilling of chilling-sensitive plants resulted in the 2.4–7.5-fold accelera-
tion of the generation. A longer chilling period reduced somewhat the rate of generation, but this rate
did not achieve the control level. The highest level of H
was observed after 2-h chilling with its subsequent
lowering. In the cold-tolerant potato, the levels of and peroxides reduced after chilling. The rate of lipid
peroxidation (an index characterizing cold-induced membrane damage) increased gradually with the lengthen-
ing of the chilling period. Reactive oxygen species are supposed to be involved in the induction of the oxidative
stress during chilling of chilling-sensitive plants and in the triggering of cold-induced damage.
Key words: Zea mays - Cucumis sativus - Panicum miliaceum - Solanum tuberosum - low temperatures - reac-
tive oxygen species - superoxide anion radical - peroxides - lipid peroxidation
: MDA—malonic dialdehyde; POL—peroxidation
of lipids; ROS—reactive oxygen species; SOD—superoxide dis-
mutase; TBA—thiobarbituric acid.