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Germination, seedling growth, and antioxidant activity in four legume (Fabaceae) species under copper sulphate fungicide treatment

Karima Jalali, Issam Nouairi, Nadia Kallala, Wissal M’sehli, Kais Zribi and Haythem Mhadhbi

The experiment was fixed to investigate the effect of copper sulphate (0, 1.5, 3 and 4.5 g/l CuSO4) used as a biological  fungicide within fruit trees fields on germination, seedling growth, as well as some mechanisms involved in germination, growth and cell protection processes on the roots of four legume plants: faba bean (Vicia faba), common vetch (Vicia sativa), fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) and Medicago truncatula. Biometric and physiological results showed that higher copper doses (3 and 4.5 g/l) significantly decreased germination percentage, root growth, total sugar content in all analyzed species. Lipid peroxidation (MDA) content and the activity of some antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and guaïacol peroxidase (GPOX) were markedly increased concomitantly with the increasing copper stress. V. sativa showed relatively high germination percentage, low root and dry weight phytotoxicity compared to other species. It also showed a relatively higher induction of antioxidant enzymes mainly guaïacolcperoxidase. With these results, V. sativa is more copper sulphate-tolerant and could be proposed as suitable candidate used as cover soil for fruit trees fields. 

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