Cover Image

Effect of chromium on basic growth factors of Pennisetum glaucum L.

Nitesh Chandulal Joshi, Pallavi Menon


One of the main concerns of agricultural production is heavy metal pollutants. The industrialization has resulted in the heavy metal contamination of agricultural soil and ecosystems. Metals are a natural component of the earth,  it is when their concentration increases from natural levels, ecological deterioration occurs. In the present study, transplant experiments were conducted to evaluate the effect of chromium-contaminated soil in Pennisetum glaucum L.The seeds growing in petridishes were exposed to chromium, in increasing concentrations of 1, 3, 5, 10, 50, 100, 200, 300, 500 ppm. Each treatment was replicated in a randomized design and observed over a period of 7 days. The seedlings were studied for their response based on germination rate, seed vigour index, length of the radicle, length of plumule, and fresh weight against seeds germinated using distilled water as a control. Five different chromium concentrations i.e., 5, 10, 50, 100 & 200 ppm, were applied to the plants. Each treatment was replicated in a randomized design and observed for 45 days. The plants were studied for the length of root, length of shoot, fresh weight, total chlorophyll content, protein content, and heavy metal analysis compared to a set irrigated using distilled water as a control. The root and shoot lengths decreased with an increase in Cr concentrations in the transplants. A gradual decrease was observed in the selected parameters, with an increase in Cr levels. The values related well with increased Phyto-accumulation of chromium within the tissues of both roots and shoots. It was observed that chromium's harmful effects on all the parameters were directly proportional to the concentration of solution employed, with the inhibition of growth being more pronounced from 50 ppm onwards. As Pennisetum glaucum L. an edible crop despite showing a good potential for application in phytoremediation techniques, it can’t be used to hyper accumulate chromium to remove it from the soil.


chromium; germination; transplants; toxicity; phytoremediation; Pennisetum glaucum L.

Full Text:



Hawkes JS (1997). Heavy Metals, J. Chem. Educ. 74(11): 1374Mildvan A.S. (1970). Metals in enzyme catalysis. In: The enzymes, Vol. " (Ed: D.D. Boyer). Academic Press, London. pp. 445-536.

Blaylock M.J., and Huang J.W. (1999). Phytoextraction of metals. In Phytoremediation of Toxic Metals: Using Plants to Clean Up the Environment, eds. Wintz H. et al. 2002

Fryzova R., Pohanka M., Martinkova P., Cihlarova H., Brtnicky M., Hladky J. and Kynicky J. (2017). Oxidative Stress and Heavy Metals in Plants. 10.1007/398_2017_7.

Baker A.J.M. and Brooks R.R. (1989). “Terrestrial higher plants which hyper accumulate metallic elements: a review of their distribution, ecology, and phytochemistry,” Bio recovery, vol. 1, pp. 81–126.

Tiller K.G. (1986). Essential and toxic heavy metals in waters and their ecological relevance. Trans. XIII Congr. Intern. Soc. Water Sci. 1, 29-44.

Imam Khasim D., Nandakumar N.V., Hussain R.C., Bhagyalakshmi K., and Naidu D.M. (1994). Chromium translocation from farm water contaminated with chromate industrial effluents into plants. Po/ln. Res. 13:303- 316.

Jasuja K., Parwana H.K., and Rao A.L.J. (1997). Removal of Cr (VI) from wastewater by Ablemoschus esculentus. Indian J. Environ. Hlth. 39:103-108.

Purohit S., Varghese T.M., and Kumari M. (2003). Effect of Cr on morphological features of tomato and bringal. Indian J. Environ. Bioi. 8, 17-22.

Mertz W. (1993). Chromium in human nutrition: a review. The Journal of Nutrition, 123: 626 633.

Sundaramoorthy P., Chidambaram A., Sankar G., Kaliyaperumal, Unnikannan P., and Baskaran L. (2010). Chromium stress in paddy: (i) Nutrient status of paddy under chromium stress; (ii) Phytoremediation of chromium by aquatic and terrestrial weeds. Comptes rendus biologies. 333. 597-607.

Shanker A.K., Cervantes C., Loza-Tavera H. and Avudainayagam S. (2005). Chromium toxicity in plants. Environ. Int., 31, 739.

Sharma D. C., Chatterjee C., and Sharma C. P. (1995). Chromium accumulation by barley seedlings (Hordeum vulgare L.). Journal of experimental botany 25: 241-251.

Toxicological Profile for Chromium. (2000). Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Health Administration Press, Atlanta, Ga, USA.

World Health Organization, Quality Control Methods for Medicinal Plant Materials, WHO, Geneva, Switzerland, 2005.

Arnon D. (1949) Copper Enzymes in Isolated Chloroplasts. Polyphenol oxidase in Beta vulgaris. Plant Physiology, 24, 1-15.

Lowry O.H., Rosebrough N.J., Fair A.L., and Randall R.J. (1951). Protein measurement with the Folin phenol reagent. J. Biol. Chem., 193: 265-275.

Sundaramoorthy P., Chidambaram A., Sankar G., Kaliyaperumal, Unnikannan P., and Baskaran L. (2010). Chromium stress in paddy: (i) Nutrient status of paddy under chromium stress; (ii) Phytoremediation of chromium by aquatic and terrestrial weeds. Comptes rendus biologies. 333. 597-607.

Zou J. H., Wang M., Jiang W. S. and Liu D. H. (2006). “Effects of hexavalent chromium (VI) on root growth and cell division in root tip cells of Amaranthus viridis L.,” Pakistan Journal of Botany, vol. 38, no. 3, pp. 673–681.

Oliveira H. (2012). “Chromium as an environmental pollutant: insights on induced plant toxicity,” Journal of Botany, vol. 2012, Article ID 375843.

Peralta J.R., Gardea Torresdey J.L., Tiemann K.J., Gomez E., Arteaga S., Rascon E., et al. (2001). Uptake and effects of five heavy metals on seed germination and plant growth in alfalfa (Medicago sativa) L. B Environ Contam Toxicol. 66(6):727 34.

Mallick S., Sinam G., Mishra R.K. and Sinha S. (2010). “Interactive effects of Cr and Fe treatments on plants growth, nutrition and oxidative status in Zea mays L.,” Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, vol. 73, no. 5, pp. 987–995.

Samantary S. (2002). Biochemical responses of Cr-tolerant and Cr sensitive mung bean cultivars grown on varying levels of chromium, Chemosphere, 47 (10): 1065 1072.

Smirnoff N. (1996). The function and metabolism of ascorbic acid in plants. Annals of Botany 78: 661–669.

Santos C.V. (2004). Regulation of chlorophyll biosynthesis and degradation by salt stress in sunflower leaves Scientia Horticulturae, 103, pp. 93-99

Vazques M.D., Poschenrieder C. and Barcelo J. (1987). Chromium (VI) induced structural changes in bush bean plants. Ann Bot. 59: 427 38.

Tripathi A.K. and Tripathi S. (1998). Changes in some physiological and biochemical characters in Albizia lebbek as bio- indicators of heavy metal toxicity. J. Environ. Biol., 20(2), 93−98.

Crooke W.M. and Inkson R.H.E. (1955). Relation between nickel toxicity and major nutrient supply. Plant Water 6:1-15.

Mayz D.M.J. and Cartwright P.M. (1984). The effect of pH and aluminium toxicity on the growth and symbiotic development of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata). Plant Water 80; 423-430.

Todd G.W, and Arnold W.M. (1961). Evaluation of methods used to determine injury to plant leaves to air pollution. Bot Gaz 1961; 123: 151-154

Shanker A.K., Djanaguiraman M., Sudhagar R., Chandrashekar C.N. and Pathmanabhan G. (2004). Differential antioxidative response of ascorbate glutathione pathway enzymes and metabolites to chromium speciation stress in green gram (Vigna radiata (L.) R. Wilczek, cv. CO 4) roots. Plant Sci., 2004a; 166: 1035 – 1043.

Pulford I.D., Watson C. and McGregor S.D. (2001). Uptake of chromium by trees: prospects for phytoremediation. Environ Geochem Health; 23: 307 – 11.

Bishnoi N. R., Dua A., Gupta V. K. and Sawhney S.K. (1993). Effects of chromium on seed germination, seedling growth and yield of, peas. Agri. Eco. Environ. 47,47-57


Copyright (c) 2021 Annals of Plant Sciences

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.