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Exogenously applied melatonin stimulates root growth and raises endogenous indoleacetic acid in roots of etiolated seedlings of Brassica juncea

Chen, Qian, Qi, Wen-bo, Reiter, Russel J., Wei, Wei, Wang, Bao-min
Journal of plant physiology 2009 v.166 no.3 pp. 324-328
seedlings, melatonin, Brassica juncea, root growth, indole acetic acid
Exogenous melatonin was applied to etiolated seedlings of wild leaf mustard (Brassica juncea) and the effect on root growth and endogenous indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) levels determined. The results show that 0.1 μM melatonin has a stimulatory effect on root growth, while 100 μM is inhibitory. Furthermore, the stimulatory effect was only detectable in young seedlings (2-d old). Older seedlings (4-d old) appear to be less susceptible to both the stimulatory and the inhibitory effect of melatonin. Exogenous application of 0.1 μM melatonin also raised the endogenous levels of free IAA in roots, while higher concentrations had no significant effect. The specific mechanism that causes exogenous melatonin to increase the amount of free IAA in roots, paired with a stimulation of root growth, remains to be uncovered.