Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

A study on the physiological and biological responses of Eichhornia crassipes (Mart.) Solms in relation to pollution stress.

Abstract

The present study is an attempt to evaluate the physiological and biochemical responses of an aquatic invasive macrophyte - Eichhornia crassipes in polluted habitats. Fresh plants from polluted water bodies-Parvathy Puthanar and Veli Lake were evaluated for photosynthetic pigment profile, root anthocyanin, bio-organics, antioxidant components, NPK profile and comparisons done with control samples to elucidate the mode of stress response. The total chlorophyll and carotenoid contents in leaf lamina and anthocyanin in root were lesser in plants invading polluted habitats. Plants adapted in saline water of Veli Lake exhibited a proportionate enhancement in total chlorophyll in petiole but the laminar estimates were showing the opposite. A significantly higher level of proline was recorded in all parts of plants invaded in polluted water from the two experimental sites. Total protein and soluble sugar contents displayed reverse trends, protein being lesser in samples from polluted habitats and sugar content being higher in comparison to the control. Non-enzymatic and enzymatic antioxidants were estimated as higher for plants from contaminated sites indicating stress induced elevation over control. Artificial stress induced by combination of heavy metals - Cd, Cr and Cu also concluded the elevation in levels of antioxidant enzymes as a stress response and plant adaptability for favouring invasion. The macronutrient uptake also indicated a reduction in response to pollution stress.