Acta Biologica Szegediensis 46(3-4): 61-69, 2002
Correlation between frost tolerance and antioxidant activities in cereals
Tibor Janda, Gabriella Szalai, Krisztina Rios-Gonzalez, Ottó Veisz, Emil Páldi
Agricultural Research Institute of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Martonvásár, Hungary

ABSTRACT Frost-tolerant and frost-sensitive cereal species were hardened at low, nonfreezing temperature. Changes in the activity of antioxidant enzymes (catalase, ascorbate peroxidase, guaiacol peroxidase, glutathione-S-transferase and glutathione reductase) in the crown and leaves were determined in the control and in hardened plants. The highest correlation between enzyme activity and frost tolerance was found in the case of guaiacol peroxidase and ascorbate peroxidase from hardened leaves. Enzyme activities in the crown and in unhardened leaves showed no significant positive correlation.

Low temperature is one of the most important stress factors limiting the growth and productivity of cereals. Only a few data are available on changes in antioxidant activity during cold hardening, and its role in the development of frost tolerance is not clearly understood. The aim of the present work was to investigate which antioxidant enzyme activities show the highest correlation with the frost tolerance of the plant.