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Plant Nanobionic Effect of Multi-walled Carbon Nanotubes on Growth, Anatomy, Yield and Grain Composition of Rice

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Abstract

Oxidized multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) having a diameter of 14–30 nm and length of 200–300 nm were used to the prime rice seeds with different concentrations of MWCNT (70, 80 and 90 μg/mL). The effects on germination, growth, anatomy, physiology, yield, quantitative seed components and toxicity (using human cell lines) were evaluated. The treatments, when extended to realistic field environments, resulted in significantly better yield and productivity of rice. The MWCNT-treated plants had denser stomata and larger root length, which resulted in faster growth and facilitated both water and mineral uptake, thus boosting the crop yield. Increased vascular tissues enhanced the chlorophyll content and photosynthetic activity. No toxic effects of MWCNT were observed in the DNA of the CNT-treated plants, and in the human cell lines, treated with harvested grain extract of MWCNT-primed plants. This study provides some new insights into the use of nanomaterials in plants and their potential benefits in agriculture thus ushering in a new organic-inorganic interface.

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Acknowledgments

HN is thankful to DST (PURSE grant), India, for instrumental facilities. The authors also want to express sincere gratitude toward Dr. Nidarshana Chaturvedi, Department of Biochemistry, Panjab University, Chandigarh, India, for DNA isolation process, Dr. Dhirendra Pratap Singh, Scientist, National Institute of Occupational Health, Occupational Medicine Division, Ahmedabad, India, for cell line studies performed at National Agri-Food Biotechnology Institute, Nutrition Science & Technology, Mohali, India and Neha Thakur, Dr. SSB, UICET, Chandigarh, India for their extensive help during quantitative seed analysis experimentation.

Funding

AJ received financial support from Department of Science and Technology, Ministry of Science and Technology (Grant no. IF130393 INSPIRE FELLOWSHIP). GV received funding from agencies SAP (UGC, New Delhi), TEQIP-III, and PURSE (DST, New Delhi) Grants.

Author information

The manuscript was written through contributions of all authors. All authors have given approval to the final version of the manuscript. AJ, GV, HN, KD have contributed equally, while LS and SK helped in plant experiments.

Correspondence to Harsh Nayyar or Gaurav Verma.

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Joshi, A., Sharma, L., Kaur, S. et al. Plant Nanobionic Effect of Multi-walled Carbon Nanotubes on Growth, Anatomy, Yield and Grain Composition of Rice. BioNanoSci. (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12668-020-00725-1

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Keywords

  • MWCNT
  • Cell viability
  • FESEM
  • Rice
  • Seed yield
  • Confocal microscope
  • Seed composition