Assessment Effect of Chitosan Foliar Application on Total Chlorophyll and Seed Yield of Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) Under Water Stress Conditions


Department of Agronomy and Plant Breeding, Roudehen Branch, Islamic Azad University, Roudehen, Iran.


Crop show morphological and physiological responses to microbial, physical or chemical factors which are known as elicitors. Chitosan is a natural biopolymer modified from chitin, which is the main structural component of squid pens, cell walls of some fungi and crab shells. Water stress is one of the most important abiotic stresses that affects plant physiological and morphological traits. In order to study the effects of chitosan foliar spraying on total chlorophyll, seed yield and its components of wheat under water stress conditions a split plot experiment based on randomized complete block design with three replications was conducted at Agricultural Research Center of Roudhen Islamic Azad University in 2017. The main plots included different irrigation regime at three levels (I1: normal irrigation, I2: water stress at heading stage, I3: water stress in grain filing period) and chitosan foliar application at tillering and stem elongation stages by three concentrations (C1:0, C2: 0.05%, C3: 0.1% chitosan in acetic acid is 1%) was belonged to sub plots. The results of analysis of variance showed that yield and its components in normal irrigation conditions have the best result and drought causes damage to the plant. The use of chitosan in the form of spraying had positive effects on some of the important characteristics of the wheat. Lowering the plant height, total chlorophyll, yield and yield components, as well as growth and development under drought stress conditions, are partially offset by the use of various concentrations of chitosan. The effect of chitosan on growth and yield of plant can be attributed to the production of plant hormones. The results of mean comparison showed that the highest economic yield was related to consumption of chitosan 0.1% in normal irrigation (6495.199 kg.ha-1) and The largest reduction of economic yield was observed under water stress in seed filing stage and in the absence of chitosan application (1511.49 kg.ha-1). The use of chitosan and normal irrigation has increased 76% to economic yield than control. It is concluded that foliar application of chitosan at vegetative stage enhanced the plant growth and development, which resulted from increased fruit yield in wheat. Among the concentrations, 0.1 percentages had superiority for plant growth, yield components and seed yield than the others. Finally its recommend that in the region under drought stress conditions, foliar application chitosan will be useful. 


Abdalla, M. M. 2011. Beneficial effects of diatomite on the growth, the biochemical contents and polymorphic DNA in Lupinus albus plants grown under water stress. Agri. Biol. J. North Am. 2: 207-220.
Abdel-Aziz, H. M. M., M. N. Abdel-Ghany Hasaneen. and A. M. Omer. 2018. Effect of foliar application of nano chitosan NPK fertilizer on the chemical composition of Wheat grains. Egypt. J. Bot.58(1): 87-95.
Allakhverdiev, I., H. Hayashi, Y. Nishiyama, A. G. Ivanov, J. A. Aliev, V. V. Klimov, N. Murata. and R. Carpentier. 2003. Glycine betaine protects the D1/D2/Cytb559 complex of photosystem II against photo-induced and heat-induced inactivation. J. Plant Physiol. 160: 41-49.
Aranaz, I., M. Mengibar, R. Harris, I. Panos, B. Miralles. and N. Acosta. 2009. Functional characterization of chitin and chitosan. J. Current Chemical Biol. 3(2): 203-30.
Bautista-Banos, S., A. N. Hemandez-Lauzardo. and M. G. Velazquez-del Valle. 2006. Chitosan as a potential natural. Crop Protection. J. 2: 456-459.
Behboudi, F., Z. Tahmasebi Sarvestani, M. Zaman Kassaee, S. A. M. Modares Sanavi, A. Sorooshzadeh. and S. B. Ahmadi. 2018. Evaluation chitosan nanoparticles effects on yield and yield components of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) under late season drought stress. J. Water Environ. Nanotechnol. 3(1): 22-39.
DOI: 10.22090/jwent.2018.01.003.
Bittelli, M., M. Flury, G. S. Campbell. and E. J. Nichols. 2001. Reduction of transpiration through foliar application of chitosan. J. Agric. Meteorol. 107(3): 167-75.
Blum, A. 2010. Plant breeding for water-limited environments. Springer Pub. New York. USA.
Cakir, R. 2004. Effect of water stress at different development stages on vegetative and reproductive growth of corn. Field Crops. J. 89: 1-16.
Chandrkrachang, S. 2002. The applications of chitin and chitosan in agriculture in Thailand. J. Adv. Chitin Sci. 5: 458–462.
Cheng, X., U. Zhou. and X. Cui. 2006. Improvement of phenyl ethanoid glycosides biosynthesis in (Cistanche deserticola)cell suspension cultures by chitosan elicitor. Biol. J. 121: 253–260.
Chibu, H. and H. Shibayama. 2003.Effects of chitosan application on the growth of several crops. In: Chitin and chitosan in life science. T. Uragami, K. Kurita. and T. Fukamizo (Eds.). Yamaguchi. Japan. pp. 235-239.
Dzung, N. A. 2005. Application of chitin, chitosan and their derivatives for agriculture in Vietnam. J. Chitin and Chitosan Sci. 10: 109-113.
Dzung, N. A. 2007. Chitosan and their derivatives as prospective biosubstances for developing sustainable eco-agriculture (Eds. S. Senel, K. M. Varum, M. M. Sumnu, A. A. Hincal). J. Adv. Chitin Sci. X. pp. 453-459.
Dzung, N. A., V. T. Phuong Khanh. and T. T. Dzung. 2011. Research on impact of chitosan oligomers on biophysical characteristics, growth, development and drought resistance of coffee. J. Carbohydrate Polymers. 84: 751–755.
El-Bassiony, A. M., Z. F. Fawzy, M. A. El-Nemr. and L. I. Yunsheng. 2014. Improvement of growth, yield and quality of two varieties of kohlrabi plants as affected by application of some bio stimulants. Middle East J. Agric. Res. 3(3): 491-498.
El-Sawy, N. M., H. A. Abd El-Rehim, A. M. Elbarbary. and E-S. A. Hegazy. 2010. Radiation-induced degradation of chitosan for possible use as a growth promoter in agricultural purposes. J. Carbohydr Polym. 79(3): 555-62.
El-Tantawy, E. M. 2009.Behavior of tomato plants as affected by spraying with chitosan and aminofort as natural stimulator substances under application of soil organic amendments. Pak. J. Biol. Sci. 12: 1164-1173.
Esma'ilzadeh Behabadi, S. and M. Sharifi. 2013. Increase secondary metabolite production plants using biological Alysytvrhay. J. Cells Tissues. 20: 119-128.
Farouk, S. and A. R. Amany. 2012. Improving growth and yield of cowpea by foliar application of chitosan under water stress. Egyptian J. Biol. 14(1): 14-6.
Farouk, S., A. A. Mosa, A. A. Taha, M. Ibrahim Heba. and A. M. El-Gahmery. 2011. Protective effect of humic acid and chitosan on radish (Raphanus sativus L. var. sativus) plants subjected to cadmium stress. J. Stress Physiol. Biochem. 7(2): 99-116.
Feruse, P. and M. Arkosiova. 2001. Variability of chlorophyll content under fluctuating environment. Acta fytotechnica et zootechnica. Special Number. Proc. Intl. Sci. Conf. Occasion of the 55th Anniv. Slovak Agric. Univ. Nitra. Slovakia.
Gaballah, M. S. and M. Moursy. 2004.Reflectants application for increasing wheat plant tolerance against salt stress. Pak. J. Biol. Sci. 7: 956-962.
Ghamarnia, H. and J. W. Gowing. 2005. Effect of water stress on three wheat cultivars. ICID 21st European Regional Conf. 15-19 May. Frankfurt (Oder) and Slubica. Germany and Poland.
Ghoname, A. A., M. A. El-Nemr, A. M. R. Abdel-Mawgoud. and W. A. El-Tohamy. 2010.Enhancement of sweet pepper crop growth and production by application of biological, organic and nutritional solutions. Res. J. Agric. Biol. Sci. 6(3): 349-355.
Gornik, K., M. Grzesik. and B. Romanowska-Duda. 2008. The effect of chitosan on rooting of grapevine cuttings and on subsequent plant growth under drought and temperature stress. J. Fruit Ornam Plant Res. 16: 333-343.
Guan, Y., H. Jin, W. Xian-ju. and S. Chen-xia. 2009. Seed priming with chitosan improves maize germination and seedling growth in relation to physiological changes under low temperature stress. J. Zhejiang Univ. Sci. B. 10(6): 427-33.
Jabeen, N. and R .Ahmad. 2013. The activity of antioxidant enzymes in response to salt stress in safflower (Carthamus tinctorius L.) and sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) seedlings raised from seed treated with chitosan. J. Sci. Food Agric. 93(7): 1699-1705.
Janmohammadi, M., H. Mostafavi, H. Kazemi, Gh. R. Mahdavinia. and N. Sabaghnia. 2014. Nitra, Slovaca Universitas Agriculturae Nitriae. J. Acta Technologica Agri. 4: 86-90. DOI: 10.2478/ata-2014-0020.
Kandil, S. A., M. S. A .Abo–El–Kheir. and H. A. El–Zeiny. 2001. Response of some wheat cultivars to water stress imposed at certain growth stages. Egyptian J. Appl. Sci. 16: 82–98.
Karimi, S., H. Abbaspour, J. M. Sinaki. and H. Makarian. 2012.Effects of water deficit and chitosan spraying on osmotic adjustment and soluble protein of cultivars castor bean (Ricinus communis L.). J. Physiol. Biochem. 8: 160-69.
Khan, M. H., K. L. B .Singha. and S. K. Panda .2002. Changes in antioxidant levels in Oryza sativa L. roots subjected to NaCl salinity stress. Acta Physiologia Plantarum. 24: 145-148.
Kowalski, B., F. Jimenez, L. Herrera. and D. Agramontepenalver. 2006. Application of soluble chitosan in vitro and in the greenhouse to increase yield and seed quality of potato mini tubers. J. Potato Res. 49: 167-176.
Kumar, A., D. P. Singh. and P. Singh. 1994.Influence of water stress on photosynthesis, transpiration, water use efficiency and yield of Brassica juncea L. J. Field Crops Res. 37: 95-101.
Lai, Q., B. Zhi-Yi, Z. Zhu-Jun, Q. Qiong-Qiu. and M. Bi-Zeng. 2007. Effects of osmotic stress on antioxidant enzymes activities in leaf discs of PSAG12-IPT modified gerbera. J. Zheijang Univ. Sci. 8(7): 458-464.
Liang, Y., Q. Chen, Q. Liu, W. Zhang. and R. Ding. 2003. Exogenous silicon (Si) increases antioxidant enzyme activity and reduces lipid peroxidation in roots of salt-stressed barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). J. Plant Physiol .160: 1157-1164.
Lizarraga-Paulin, E. G., I. Torres-Pacheco, E. Moreno-Martinez. and S. P. Miranda-Castro. 2011. Chitosan application in maize (Zea mays L.) to counteract the effects of abiotic stress at seedling level. Af. J. Biotech. 10(34): 6439-6446.
Malekpoor, F., A. Ghasemi Pirbalouti. and A. Salimi. 2016. Effect of foliar application of chitosan on morphological and physiological characteristics of basil under reduced irrigation. J. Res. on Crops. 17(2): 354-359.
Doi: 10.5958/2348-7542.2016.00060.7.
New, N., S. Chandrkrachang. and W. F. Stevens. 2004. Application of chitosan in Myanmar’s agriculture sector, In: Proceedings of the Sixth Asia Pacific Chitin and Chitosan Symposium, May 23–26. The National Univ. Singapore.
Nge, K. L., N. Nwe, S. Chandrkrachang. and W. F. Stevens. 2006. Chitosan as a growth stimulator in orchid tissue culture. Plant Sci. J. 170(6): 1185-90.
Nikolaeva, M. K., S. N. Maevskaya, A. G. Shugaev. and N. G. Bukhov. 2010. Effect of drought on chlorophyll content and antioxidant enzyme activities in leaves of three wheat cultivars varying in productivity. Russian J. Plant Physiol. 57: 87–95.
Orgaz, B., M. M. Lobete, C. H. Puga. and C. San Jose. 2011. Effectiveness of Chitosan against Mature Biofilms Formed by Food Related Bacteria. Intl. J. Mol. Sci. 12(1): 11-20.
Ruiz-García. Y. and E. Gómez-Plaza. 2013. Elicitors: A Tool for Improving Fruit Phenolic Content. Agric. 3: 33-52.
Saharan, V., G. Sharma, M. Yadav, M. K. Choudhary, S. S. Sharma. and A. Pal. 2015. Synthesis and in vitro antifungal efficacy of Cu–chitosan nanoparticles against pathogenic fungi of tomato. Intl. J. Biol. Macromol. 75(Supplement C): 346-53.
Salehi, S., Z. Rezayatmand. and A. Ghasemi Pirbalouti. 2017. The effect of foliar application of chitosan on yield and essential oil of savory (Satureja isophylla L.) under salt stress. J. Herbal Drugs. 8(2): 101-108. Doi: 10.18869/JHD.2017.101.
Shamsi, K. and S. Kobraee. 2013. Effect of different irrigation regimes on yield and water use efficiency of winter wheat. J. Annals Biol. Res. 4(5): 222-227.
Sharathchandra, R. G., S. N. Raj, N. P. Shetty, K. N. Amruthesh. and H. S. Shetty. 2004. A Chitosan formulation Elexa™ induces downy mildew disease resistance and growth promotion in pearl millet. J. Crop Prot. 23(10): 881-888.
Sharif, R., M. Mujtaba, M. Ur. Rahman, A. Shalmani, H. Ahmad, T. Anwar, D. Tianchan. and X. Wang. 2018. The Multifunctional Role of Chitosan in Horticultural Crops; A Review. Molecules. J. 23(872): 1-20. Doi: 10.3390/molecules23040872.
Sheikha, S. A. and F. M. Al-Malki. 2011. Growth and chlorophyll responses of bean plants to chitosan applications. Europ. J. Sci. Res. 50(1): 124-134.
Shu, Y. J., X. Q. Shi. and Z. X. Zhan. 2007. The effect of chitosan on germination of seeds and seedlings of cucumber cold resistance. Seeds. J. 26: 22-25.
Song, F. B., D. J. Ying, Z. Lie, H. G. Kun. and G. Yi-Qing .1998. Effect of water stress on maize pollen vigor and filament fertility. J. Acta Agronomica Sinica. 24: 368-373.
Song, S. Q., Q. M. SANG. and S. R. Guo. 2006. Physiological synergisms of chitosan on salt resistance of cucumber seedlings. J. Acta Botanica Boreali-Occidentalia Sinica. 26: 435-441.
Tambussi, E. A. and J. Bort. 2007. Water use efficiency in C3 cereals under Mediterranean conditions: a review of physiological aspects. J. Annals Appl. Biol. 150: 307–32.
Teran, H. and S. P. Singh. 2002. Comparison of sources and lines selected for drought resistance in common bean published as Idaho Agric. Exp. Stn. J. Article No. 01722. Univ. Idaho. College Agric. Life Sci. Moscow. ID: 83844. J. Crop Sci. 42(1): 64-70.
Wang, Y., H. G. HE. and Y. Zhou. 2006. Effect of different molecular weight chitosan on several physiological and biochemical characteristics related with plant defence reaction. J. Plant Physiol. 42: 1109-1111.
Xiong, L. M., K. S. Schumaker. and J. K. Zhu. 2002. Cell signaling during cold, drought, and salt stress. The Plant Cell. J. 14: 165-183.
Ye, Y. P. and Y. Q. Lou. 2009. Effect of chitosan with different concentration on drought resistance of sugarcane under drought stress. J. Henan Agric. Sci. 11: 47-50.
Zhang, Y. Y., Y. Li. and T. Gao. 2008.Arabidopsis SDIRI Enhance Drought Tolerance in Crop Plant. J. Biosci. Biotech. Biochem. 72(8): 2251-2254.