Effect of Gamma Rays on Seed Germination, Survival Rate and Morphology of Stevia rebaudiana Hybrid


  • Shamsiah Abdullah Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7975-4443
  • Nor Yasmin Mohamad Fauzi Universiti Teknologi MARA
  • Aida Khalida Khalid Universiti Teknologi MARA
  • Mohamad Osman ATRI Advisory
  • Azhar Mohamad




Gamma ray, germination, mutagenesis, radiosensitivity test, Stevia rebaudiana


The effects of gamma radiation are investigated by studying seed germination, survival rate and morphological characteristics of Stevia rebaudiana. Improvement of stevia plant through mutagenesis could be one of the ways to produce stevia with delay flowering. Currently, stevia varieties in Malaysia exhibit early flowering because they received day length less than 13 hours. In this study, seeds of stevia hybrid, H2, are exposed to gamma irradiation doses at 0, 100, 300, 500, 700, 900 and 1100 Gy.  Our results show that the germination and survival rate, as well as morphological parameters of stevia decreased by increasing the irradiation dose. Moreover, irradiated seeds exposed to higher doses (>500 Gy) failed to germinate. Based on the survival percentage vs gamma doses, the calculated lethal dose was 323 Gy, which will allow obtaining promising stevia mutants. The plant height and number of leaves in irradiated plant obtained were highest in treatment 100 Gy, 13.50±7.48 cm and 16.00±7.66 respectively. Meanwhile, the length of leaves recorded was highest in treatment 300 Gy (3.00±0.89 cm). Analysis on the chemical content and molecular level of the irradiated plant for future work are useful to verify the changes due to the radiation. Gamma irradiation is a promising alternative to obtain a greater stevia variability for advanced mutant lines.

Author Biographies

Shamsiah Abdullah, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM)

Faculty of Plantation and Agrotechnology, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Cawangan Melaka, Kampus Jasin

Nor Yasmin Mohamad Fauzi, Universiti Teknologi MARA

Faculty of Plantation and Agrotechnology, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Cawangan Melaka, Kampus Jasin


M. Serfaty, M. Ibdah, R. Fischer, et al., “Dynamics of yield components and stevioside production in Stevia rebaudiana grown under different planting times, plant stands and harvest regime,” Industrial Crops and Products, vol. 50, pp. 731-736, 2013.

R. A. Abdullateef, M. Osman and Z. Zainuddin, “Acclimatized apparatus enhanced seed germination in Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni,” International Journal of Biology, vol. 7, no. 2, pp. 28, 2015.

S. Pande and M. Khetmalas, “Effect of gamma irradiations on seed germination and seedling survival of Stevia rebaudiana Bert.,” South Asian Journal of Experimental Biology, vol. 1, no. 6, pp. 255-259, 2011.

N. Noordin, R. Ibrahim, N. H. Mohd Sajahan, S. Moosa and S. Hussein, “Effects of acute and chronic gamma irradiation on in vitro growth of Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni” Agrotechnology and Biosciences Division, Malaysian Nuclear Agency, Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation Malaysia (MOSTI).

M. S. Chiew, K. S. Lai, S. Hussien, S. and O. J. Abdullah, “A Review on induced mutagenesis of Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni,” Pertanika Journal of Scholarly Research Review, vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 77-85, 2016.

P. Kashiani, G. Saleh and R. Rus, “Performance and genetic diversity among a collection of Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni accessions using microsatellite markers in Malaysia. Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute Proceedings, vol. 36, no. 1, pp. 221, 2020.

J. LeCroy, “Factors affecting seed and stem cutting propagation of Stevia rebaudiana Bert.,” Doctoral dissertation, 2014.

R. A. Abdullateef, and M. Osman, “Influence of Genetic Variation on Morphological Diversity in Accessions of Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni,” International Journal of Biology, vol. 3, no. 3, 2011, pp. 66-72.

A. Raina, R. A. Laskar, S. Khursheed, et al., “Role of mutation breeding in crop improvement-past, present and future,” Asian Research Journal of Agriculture, pp. 1-13, 2016.

F. J. Novak and H. Brunner, “Plant breeding: Induced mutation technology for crop improvement,” IAEA Bull, vol. 4, pp. 25-33, 1992.

S. Y. Kang, D. S. Kim and G. D. Lee, “Genetic improvement of crop plants by mutation techniques in Korea,” Plant Mutation Reports, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 7-15, 2007.

K. C. Gairola, A. R. Nautiyal and A. K. Dwivedi, “Effect of temperature and germination media on seed germination of Jatropha curcas Linn.,” Adv. Bio-Res., vol. 2, pp. 66-71, 2011.

D. Dhakhanamoorthy, R. Selvaraj and A. Chidambaram, “Physicla and chemical mutagenics in Jatropha curcas L. to induce variability in seed germination, growth and yield traits,” Rom. J. Plant Biol., vol. 55, pp. 113-25, 2010.

V. Manova and D. Gruszka, “DNA damage and repair in plants from models to crops,” Front Plant Sci., vol. 6, pp. 885, 2015.

M. Saraswathi, G. Kannan, S. Uma, R. Thangavelu and S. Backiyarani, “Improvement of banana cv. Rasthali (Silk, AAB) against Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. cubense (VCG 0124/5) through induced mutagenesis: Determination of LD50 specific to mutagen, explants, toxins and in vitro and in vivo screening for Fusarium wilt resistance,” Indian J Exp Biol., vol. 54, pp. 345–353, 2016.

J. E. Brandle, A. N. Starratt and M. Gijzen, “Stevia rebaudiana: its agricultural, biological, and chemical properties,” Canadian Journal of Plant Science, vol. 78, no. 4, pp. 527-536, 1998.

S. Pande and M. Khetmalas, “Biological effects of gamma irradiation on in vitro culture of Stevia rebaudiana,” Indian Journal of Applied research, vol. 1, no. 2, 2011, pp. 11-12.

A. Fusconi, O. Repetto, E. Bona, et al., “Effects of cadmium on meristem activity and nucleus ploidy in roots of Pisum sativum L. cv. Frisson seedlings,” Environmental and Experimental Botany, vol. 58, no. 1-3, pp. 253-260, 2006.

A. Majeed, Z. Muhammad and R. Ali, “Gamma irradiation, effect on germination and general growth characteristics of plants,” Pakistan Journal of Botany, no. 50, vol. 6, pp. 2449, 2018.

N. A. Hasbullah, R. M. Taha, A. Saleh and N. Mahmad, “Irradiation effect on in vitro organogenesis, callus growth and plantlet development of Gerbera jamesonii,” Horticult Brasil, vol. 30, pp. 252–257, 2012.

T. Charbaji and I, Nabulsi, “Effect of low doses of gamma irradiation on in vitro growth of grapevine,” Plant Cell Tissue Organ Cult., vol 57, pp.129–132, 1999.

S. A. Khan, L. U. Rahman, R. Verma and K. Shanker, “Physical and chemical mutagenesis in Stevia rebaudiana: variant generation with higher UGT expression and glycosidic profile but with low photosynthetic capabilities,” Acta Physiologiae Plantarum, vol. 38, no. 1, pp. 1-12, 2016.

N. Mashev, G. Vassilev, and K. Ivanove, “A study on N-alyl N-2 pyridyl thiourea and gamma radiation treatment on growth and quality of peas and wheat,” Bulgarian Journal of Plant Physiology, vol. 21, no. 4, pp. 56-53, 1995.