ABSTRACT.
Seeds priming with β-aminobutyric acid alleviated salinity stress of chickpea at germination and early seedling growth

Safiya Elradi1, 2, Mohamed Suliman1, 2, Guisheng Zhou1, 3*, Eltyeb Nimir2, Nimir Nimir1, 2, Guanglong Zhu1, Xiurong Jiao1, Tianyao Meng1, Muhi Ibrahim1, 4, and Adam Ali1, 5
 
Salinity stress is one of the most prevalent environmental factors that severely affect seed germination, early growth stages, and crop production. The present study was carried out to evaluate the protective role of β-aminobutyric acid (BABA) in alleviating salt stress in chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) varieties (Jabel Marra, Porgeg and Shendi) under four concentrations of NaCl solutions (0, 50, 100, and 150 mM NaCl). Three levels of β-aminobutyricacid (0, 0.25, and 0.50 mM) were applied. Germination and seedling attributes were measured. A high level of salinity (150 mM NaCl) increased mean germination time by 10.0% and decreased the coefficient velocity of germination and root dry weight by 12.1% and 96.2%, respectively, compared with the control. 'Jabel Marra' significantly surpassed other studied varieties in germination characters, while at seedling growth , 'Shendi' outperformed other varieties in root and shoot length, fresh, and dry weights. Seeds treated with 0.25 mM BABA caused increment on water uptake by 18.1% compared with 0.0 mM BABA. At 150 mM NaCl, seeds primed with 0.50 mM BABA increased the germination percentage of 'Jabel Marra' and 'Porgeg' by 6.3% and 11.9% as compared with 0.0 mM BABA. Under 50 mM NaCl and 0.50 mM BABA, root length, shoot length, shoot fresh weight, and root dry weight were increased by 170.6%, 44.8%, 80%, and 49.3%, respectively, relative to 0.0 mM BABA. The present study results suggested that seed priming by BABA could be useful to alleviate the salinity stress of chickpea at germination and early seedling growth.
Keywords: ?-Aminobutyric acid, chickpea, germination, salinity stress, seedling growth.
1Yangzhou University, Joint International Research Laboratory of Agriculture and Agri-Product Safety of the Ministry of Education of China, Yangzhou 225009, China.2University of Khartoum, Faculty of Agriculture, Khartoum 11115, Sudan.3Yangzhou University, Jiangsu Co-Innovation Center for Modern Production Technology of Grain Crops, Yangzhou 225009, China. *Corresponding author (gszhou@yzu.edu.cn).4Sudan University of Science and Technology, College of Agricultural Studies, Department of Agronomy, Khartoum 13311, Sudan. 5University of Gadarif, College of Agricultural and Environment Science, Department of Agronomy, Gadarif 32214, Sudan.