Enhancement of drought tolerance in potato employing nanoparticles of different biostimulants

Bassam F. Alowaiesh1*, Nabil S. Awad2, 3, Mohammad E. Eldenary4, and Diaa Abd El Moneim5*
Improving drought tolerance of potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) is integral, particularly under current climate fluctuations. The objective of this study was to assess the impact of different concentrations of nanoparticles of ascorbic acid (AS), benzoic acid (BA), and salicylic acid (SA) individually and in combined treatments on potato under drought-induced stress. The assessed biostimulants with different concentrations (0.50 and 0.75 mM) were applied to two potato cultivars (Spunta and Lady-Rosetta). Nodal cutting of each cultivar was exposed to drought stress via 30% polyethylene glycol (PEG) in MS media. Five growth characters (plantlet length, number of leaves plant-1, number of roots, number of lateral branches plantlet-1, and root length) were measured after 7, 14, and 21 d. The results indicated that the evaluated cultivars exhibited highly significant differences (< 0.001) in all characters. Moreover, all evaluated nano biostimulants recorded highly significant differences (< 0.001) compared to the untreated control. The co-application of two nano biostimulants was stronger than the sole use of one material. The co-application of AS+BA was the most effective, and its impact was more considerable compared to the other treatments. The assessed cultivars displayed significant interaction with the application of nano biostimulants. ‘Lady-Rosetta’ responded more to the applied nano biostimulants in all studied characters. In conclusion, applying AS, SA, and BA improved the growth of ‘Lady-Rosetta’ under drought stress conditions. Furthermore, the combined treatment AS+BA is more powerful in modulating drought stress's adverse impacts on potato plants.
Keywords: Drought-induced stress, heatmap, and hierarchical clustering, polyethylene glycol, principal component analysis, Solanum tuberosum.
1Jouf University, College of Science, Biology Department, Sakaka 72341, Saudi Arabia.
2Misr University for Science and Technology (MUST), College of Biotechnology, Giza-12563, Egypt.
3Aswan University, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Aswan-81528, Egypt.
4Horticulture Research Institute, Potato and Vegetatively Propagated Vegetables Research Department (PVPV), Giza, Egypt.
5Arish University, Faculty of Environmental Agricultural Sciences, El-Arish 45511, Egypt.
*Corresponding author (bfalawish@ju.edu.sa; dabdelmoniem@aru.edu.eg).