Effects of carbon-based nanomaterials on seed germination, biomass accumulation and salt stress response of bioenergy crops. Academic Article uri icon


  • Bioenergy crops are an attractive option for use in energy production. A good plant candidate for bioenergy applications should produce a high amount of biomass and resist harsh environmental conditions. Carbon-based nanomaterials (CBNs) have been described as promising seed germination and plant growth regulators. In this paper, we tested the impact of two CBNs: graphene and multi-walled carbon nanotubes (CNTs) on germination and biomass production of two major bioenergy crops (sorghum and switchgrass). The application of graphene and CNTs increased the germination rate of switchgrass seeds and led to an early germination of sorghum seeds. The exposure of switchgrass to graphene (200 mg/l) resulted in a 28% increase of total biomass produced compared to untreated plants. We tested the impact of CBNs on bioenergy crops under salt stress conditions and discovered that CBNs can significantly reduce symptoms of salt stress imposed by the addition of NaCl into the growth medium. Using an ion selective electrode, we demonstrated that the concentration of Na+ ions in NaCl solution can be significantly decreased by the addition of CNTs to the salt solution. Our data confirmed the potential of CBNs as plant growth regulators for non-food crops and demonstrated the role of CBNs in the protection of plants against salt stress by desalination of saline growth medium.

published proceedings

  • PLoS One

author list (cited authors)

  • Pandey, K., Lahiani, M. H., Hicks, V. K., Hudson, M. K., Green, M. J., & Khodakovskaya, M.

citation count

  • 80

complete list of authors

  • Pandey, Kamal||Lahiani, Mohamed H||Hicks, Victoria K||Hudson, M Keith||Green, Micah J||Khodakovskaya, Mariya

editor list (cited editors)

  • Acharya, K.

publication date

  • August 2018