Functionalized-ZnO-Nanoparticle Seed Treatments to Enhance Growth and Zn Content of Wheat (Triticum aestivum) Seedlings

Zeinah Elhaj Baddar, Jason M. Unrine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


This study investigated the potential of ZnO-nanoparticle (NP) seed treatments for enhancing Zn nutrition in wheat (Triticum aestivum). We tested bare, ZnO core Zn3(PO4)2 shell, dextran (DEX)-coated, and dextran sulfate (DEX(SO4))-coated ZnO NPs and ZnSO4 solution as an ionic control. We measured root and shoot Zn concentrations, lengths, biomasses, and seed germination upon termination of the assay. All ZnO NPs were more effective than ZnSO4 in increasing tissue Zn concentrations and seedling growth. Exposure to higher concentrations of ZnSO4 significantly decreased growth and germination rates relative to those of the controls and the ZnO-NP groups, whereas none of the ZnO NPs significantly affected seed germination. Bare and DEX-ZnO NPs increased Zn concentrations in wheat without decreasing growth. The results of this study demonstrated that ZnO NPs can be used as an effective seed treatment to enhance both Zn nutrition and plant growth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12166-12178
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Issue number46
StatePublished - Nov 21 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2018 American Chemical Society.


  • Zn fortification
  • germination
  • seed coating
  • seedling growth
  • surface-modified ZnO nanoparticles
  • wheat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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