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Publication Title | International Conference on Advances in Agricultural, Biological & Environmental Sciences (AABES-2014) Oct 15-16, 2014 Dubai (UAE)

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International Conference on Advances in Agricultural, Biological & Environmental Sciences (AABES-2014) Oct 15-16, 2014 Dubai (UAE)

The Effects of Fast Neutron Irradiation on the Leaf Morphology of Capsicum Annuum L

Falusi, O.A., and Daudu, O. Y.

Abstract—In order to assess the effect of fast neutron irradiation (FNI) on the leaf morphology of Capsicum annuum, ), dry seeds of the varieties were exposed to fast neutron irradiation (FNI) from an Americium Beryllium source with a flux of 1.5 × 104 n.cm-2 s-1. Five irradiation treatments, 0, 30, 60, 90, and 120 min. have been tried. The treated seeds were sown with their respective controls and the effects on the leaf of the plants were studied. The results obtained showed that all irradiation treatments caused leaf morphological abnormalities, such as leaves with reduced size, leaves with invaginated or inverted margins, or with a blunt or bifurcated apex, when compared with control plants. There was an increase in leaf abnormalities with increase in the duration of fast neutron irradiation (FNI). 120 min was identified as the most effective irradiation period to induce leaf morphological abnormality in the plants .This information could be used by breeders to produce useful mutations for yield and other parameters in pepper.

Keywords—Americium-Beryllium, Capsicum annuum ,Fast neutron, leaf abnormalities.

I. INTRODUCTION

CAPSICUM spp. belong to the nightshade family, Solanaceae [1]. The genus consists of over 100 species and even more botanical varieties [2,3].These include five domesticated species, namely C. annuum, C. frutescens, C. baccatum, C. chinense and C. pubescens, all believed to have originated from the New World[4,5]. C. annuum and C. frutescens are the most recognized species grown in commercial quantities all over Nigeria[6,7]. These two species form an important ingredient in people’s diet the world over [1], due to the pungency of the fruits, resulting from the high concentration of capsaicinoid alkaloids [5]. In addition, Capsicum spp. are a rich source of vitamins A and C (ascorbic acid) [8,2]. Capsicum fruits are also popular as food spices, colouring agent, as well as pharmaceutical ingredients[9]. In African medicine, Capsicum spp. are used in treating sore throat[10]. Capsaicin is used mainly in topical medications in modern medicine as a circulatory stimulant and analgesic. These popular uses of Capsicum peppers have fuelled an increasing demand for the crop, and a search for simple but viable ways of increasing supply of the product, independent of man-power and the adequacy of farming conditions. Thus, attention has gradually shifted towards improving the genetic quality of the species through plant breeding and selection. One possible means is through radiation-induced genetic variability. The FAO [11] reported that 2008 marked the 80th anniversary of

Falusi, O.A. is with the Dept of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Tech. Minna, Nigeria Daudu O.Y. is also with the Dept of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Tech. Minna, Nigeria . Corresponding author Phone : +2348036732588 E mail: falusiolamide@gmail.com.

mutation induction in plants. The application of gamma rays and other physical mutagens such as fast neutrons has generated a vast amount of genetic variability and has played a significant role in plant breeding and genetic studies[12]. The widespread use of induced mutants in plant breeding programmes throughout the world has led to the official release of more than 2700 plant mutant varieties [11]. The present work aimed to investigate the response of three botanical varieties of C. annuum to different doses of fast neutron irradiation (FNI) for different time periods on leaf characteristics.

II. MATERIALS AND METHODS

Fresh fruit of three pepper botanical varieties (50 fruits each) were bought from a local farmer in Minna, Niger State, Nigeria. The fruits were maintained in separate polythene bags. The varieties were identified as C. annuum var.accuminatum Fingerh (MN/SH/001), C. annuum var. abbreviatum Fingerh (MN/AR/002), and C. annuum var.grossum Sendt (MN/AT/003) (Table 1) using a taxonomic aid provided by Simmond, [13], as well as morphological descriptions of Hutchinson and Dalziel [14], [15] and [10]. Each fruit of three Capsicum varieties were cut open and their seeds were removed, kept separately in three trays and sundried for 8 h. The dry seeds were irradiated with FNI at the Centre for Energy and Research Training (CERT), Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, using an Americium- Beryllium source with a flux of 1.5 × 104 n.cm-2 s-1 for 0,30, 60, 90, and 120 min. The equipment used was a Miniature Neutron Source Reactor (MNSR) designed by the China Institute of Atomic Energy (CIAE) and licensed to operate at a maximum power of 31 kW [16].The sun-dried seeds were tested for viability using the floatation method [17] before FNI treatment. Treated seeds (100 from each treatment) were then sowed in nursery trays to obtain seedlings, and then transplanted into 3.5-L plastic pots containing garden soil, at a rate of three seedlings per pot after 4 weeks in the nursery. No fertilizer was applied although, when the crop began to flower, an insecticide (Pyrethroids cypermethrin at the rate of 10–15 l ha–1 with controlled droplet application using spinning disc sprayers) was applied to prevent insect-borne diseases. The planted seeds were watered once daily between 5.00 and 6.30 pm using borehole water. Each treatment was replicated four times using a completely randomized design (CRD). At maturity , leaves were collected from100 plants for each variety to assess the effect of the different doses of FNI on the leaf morphology.

http://dx.doi.org/10.15242/IICBE.C1014039

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