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Table 1 Biochemical and physiological responses of plants to salinity stress

From: Salinity tolerance mechanisms and their breeding implications

Sr. no. Plant traits Yield-related impacts on plant Variation in stress References
1 Plants root growth Inhibition of nutrients and water absorption Stress lowers the osmotic potential of plant roots. [30]
2 Leaf tissues Necrosis and chlorosis Salt in the cells produce toxicity, and antioxidant helps in lowering the toxicity. [30]
3 Leaf anatomy Impact on leaf tissue Reduction in the epidermis and mesophyll thickness as well as decrease in the intercellular spaces [31]
4 Oxidative damage Cellular toxicity due to production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) Plants having antioxidant activity tolerate this oxidative damage. [31]
5 Osmotic potential Accumulation of salt in the leaves cause injury to the leaves and roots of the plants. Halophytes tolerate the salt stress by accumulation of salt in the leaves by modifying the osmotic potential but not glycophytes as they are less tolerant to salt. [32]
6 Photosynthesis and photosynthetic pigments Reduced photosynthetic capacity Closing of the stomata by subjection of plant to salt for a short time increases the tolerance of plant to salt stress. [33]
7 Gaseous change characteristics Salt stress notably decreased the few gaseous changes characteristics like water use efficiency, transpiration rate, etc. in some cultivars of sunflower. Salt concentration improves the chlorophyll ratio a/b as the amount of chlorophyll b may be transformed into chlorophyll a in the course of the process of degradation resulting in the increased concentration of chlorophyll a. [32,33,34]
8 Reproductive development Salinity caused sterility in some plants. In response to salinity, plants modify itself by inducing early flowering and prevention of lateral shoot development. [35]
9 Hormones Increased concentration of ABA Enhanced amount of ABA during salt stress attenuates the repressive effect of salinity on growth as well as translocation of assimilates. [15, 36]
10 Amino acids Decrease in the concentration of amino acids such as methionine, arginine, and cystine. Increase in the amount of proline in response to salt stress [37]
11 Carbohydrates Agglomeration of trehalose, fructose, glucose, fructans, and starch. In the carbon storage, osmoprotection and scavenging of ROS, these carbohydrates play a role in salt stress conditions. [31, 38]