Timing for antioxidant-priming against rice seed ageing: optimal only in non-resistant stage

Ling-xiang Xu, Xia Xin, Guang-kun Yin, Ji Zhou, Xin-xiong Lu

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Seed deterioration due to ageing strongly affects both germplasm preservation and agricultural production. Decelerating seed deterioration and boosting seed viability become increasingly urgent. The loss of seed viability is inevitable even under cold storage. For species with short-lived seed or for regions with poor preservation infrastructure where cold storage is not readily available, seed enhancement is more reliable to increase seed viability and longevity. Antioxidant priming as a way of seed enhancement usually improves seed germination. As for post-priming survival, however, significant uncertainty exists. The controversy lies particularly on seeds of high germination percentage (GP > 95%) whose viability is hardly improvable and the benefits of priming depend on prolonging seed longevity. Therefore, this study timed antioxidant priming to prolong the longevity of high-viability seeds under artificially accelerated ageing (AAA). Rice (Nipponbare) seeds (GP > 97%) under room-temperature-storage (RTS) for 6 months. were resistant to AAA first with little viability loss for a certain period, the resistant stage. This resistance gradually vanished without GP change, during a prolonged RTS period which was named the vulnerable stage. According to the results, although antioxidant priming severely curtailed the resistant stage for seeds with a long plateau in the survival curve, it decelerated viability loss for seeds in the vulnerable stage. In complement to seed storage, priming potentially retains high seed GP which would decrease without seed enhancement. To maximize the benefits of priming for high-GP seeds, two time points are advised as the start of a time window for priming: (1) just at the end of the resistant stage without notable viability loss, which is hard to grasp by GP monitoring; (2) slight but identifiable GP decline.
Original languageEnglish
Article number13294
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 6 Aug 2020

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