Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 5, pp 5111–5121 | Cite as

Alleviative role of exogenously applied mannitol in maize cultivars differing in chromium stress tolerance

  • Ume Habiba
  • Shafaqat AliEmail author
  • Muhammad Rizwan
  • Muhammad Ibrahim
  • Afzal Hussain
  • Muhammad Rizwan Shahid
  • Saud A. Alamri
  • Mohammed Nasser Alyemeni
  • Parvaiz Ahmad
Research Article


A pot experiment was performed to examine the role of foliar applied mannitol (M) in chromium (Cr) stress alleviation in different maize cultivars. Two maize cultivars, one tolerant (6103) and one sensitive (9108) to chromium stress, were grown in soil treated with three concentrations of Cr (0, 5, and 10 mg kg−1) and three levels of mannitol (0, 50, and 100 mg L−1). Chromium stress decreased the overall growth of plants by reducing the plant height, root/shoot dry weight, chlorophyll contents, and enzymatic activities, while exacerbated the severity of reactive oxygen species in both maize cultivars. Chromium-induced reduction in growth attributes of maize plants was relatively higher in sensitive cultivar than that of tolerant one. Uptake of Cr by the plants and its translocation from roots to shoots increased with increasing concentration in the soil. However, foliar application of mannitol significantly alleviated the Cr stress and improved growth, biomass, and photosynthetic pigments of maize plants. Mannitol also considerably reduced Cr contents in leaves and roots of both cultivars. Hence, it is concluded that mannitol can be helpful for crops grown on heavy metal, especially Cr, contaminated soils for remediation purpose.


Mannitol Maize Chromium Alleviation Foliar application 



This study was funded by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) Islamabad, Pakistan (IPFP/HRD/HEC/2014/1035). The authors would also like to extend their sincere appreciation to the Deanship of Scientific Research at King Saud University for its funding to the Research Group number (RGP-199).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ume Habiba
    • 1
  • Shafaqat Ali
    • 1
    Email author
  • Muhammad Rizwan
    • 1
  • Muhammad Ibrahim
    • 1
  • Afzal Hussain
    • 1
  • Muhammad Rizwan Shahid
    • 2
  • Saud A. Alamri
    • 3
  • Mohammed Nasser Alyemeni
    • 3
  • Parvaiz Ahmad
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Environmental Sciences and EngineeringGovernment College UniversityFaisalabadPakistan
  2. 2.Institute of Soil and Environmental SciencesUniversity of AgricultureFaisalabadPakistan
  3. 3.Department of Botany and Microbiology, College of ScienceKing Saud UniversityRiyadhSaudi Arabia
  4. 4.Department of BotanyS.P. CollegeSrinagarIndia

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