Imtiyaz Hussain, Ajey Singh, Himani Singh, S. C. Singh and N. B. Singh*
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Nanotechnology no doubt is a boom for science but exposure of nanoparticles (NPs) in the environment is a new concern. Application of NPs in agriculture to increase crop yield is still debated. In the present study 10–40 µg.ml-1 concentrations of ruthenium oxide (RuO2) NPs were exposed to Broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. italica) seedlings in hydroponic culture. RuO2 NPs are synthesized via Laser ablation method and hence are contamination free. UV-visible spectroscopy and field emission scanning electron microscope (FE-SEM) is used for the characterization of NPs. Carotenoids, protein and sugar content decreased with increase in concentrations of RuO2 NPs. Total chlorophyll content increased to maximum with highest content of Chlorophyll a & b at 10 µg.ml-1 of RuO2 NPs, but no stimulatory effect was recorded at highest doses. Lipid peroxidation, was unaffected by exposure to 0–20 µg.ml-1 NPs, but at 40 µg.ml-1 malondialdehyde (MDA) formation and SOD activity increased by two fold. It is concluded that RuO2 NPs significantly inhibited the seedlings growth of broccoli by impairing the metabolism of the test plants.
Fig.: FE-SEM image of ruthenium oxide NPs taken at 50,000 X, showing NPs in the range of 30-113 nm.