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Posted: May 21, 2010

Nanotechnologies in contemporary plant-growing

(Nanowerk News) As a result of the joint investigation, several complex biopreparations were obtained, containing the growth regulator BIOLAN and etheric oils and plant extracts manifesting their action in extremely low (nano-) concentrations. In-depth studies of the physicochemical properties of BIOLAN with the help of nuclear magnetic resonance, calorimetry, ultraviolet and infrared spectroscopy and other methods show that the nanobioregulator investigated possesses a number of unique properties that explain to a considerable degree its high growth-regulating activity.
The problem of the quality of production in plant-growing is becoming increasingly interesting both for users and producers in agriculture. Agroecological policy is of special significance for the common agricultural policy of the European Union. What is more, following the changes in the priorities of this policy, the budget of the European Union for agroecological programmes will increase at the expense of the decrease of funds for the compensatory payments on products. In pursuance of the EU policy, after the accession of Bulgaria into the EU, the country member is obliged to enforce these agroecological schemata.
Nanotechnologies are an interdisciplinary field uniting in itself inorganic and organic chemistry with physics, biology and material science and constitute one of the most modern and rapidly developing fields of science and scientific practice around the world. These are based on the new properties that nanomaterials have, built up from different nanoparticles (domains, crystals, grains, pores, micelles, etc.) with sizes from several nanometers to several tens of nanometers, as well as on the new processes used for their processing, as matter is governed by new laws at nonometer distances.
In plant-growing, nanobiotechnologies, being methods for changing the structure of substances, are realized at nano- and sub-nano levels. Growth regulators of a new generation and sophisticated biotechnologies at the nano-level are already successfully applied in plant-growing on more than 50 cultures. Fundamental research shows that nanobiopreparations activate the major life processes of plants (membraneous processes, splitting of cells, photosynthesis, processes of breathing and feeding of plants) at the expense of the activation of the rhizosphere of plants. At the same time, these technologies enable us to decrease many times the doses of the imported pesticides.
Because of the accumulation of many proofs concerning the harmful impact of a number of chemicals used in agriculture, many investigators concentrate their efforts on finding compounds that are alternatives of the conventional growth regulators and pesticides, as well as on developing modern agrotechnologies. As a reaction to these needs, a team was formed in the last 15 years at the Institute of Physiology of Plants at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences dealing with ethericoil plants and medical plants, emphasizing on the chemical activity of the isolated oils and plant extracts, their impact for the elimination of the harmful effect of some herbicides, as well as the growth-regulating and pesticidal properties of these natural chemical substances.
In 2008, the team united its efforts with a group of Ukrainian scientists on a joint project for the execution of Contract No DO 02-37/05.12.2008, entitled: A Study on the Effectiveness of the Application of Growth Regulators in Ecological Agriculture in the Ukraine and the Republic of Bulgaria, financed by the Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science. The major aims of the study are: 1/ Creation of a new biopreparation on the basis of a combination of growth regulators produced in the Ukraine and natural chemical substances of a plant origin isolated in Bulgaria, and 2/ Development of an all-round bioagrotechnology that is appropriate for being applied in modern organic agriculture, beginning with seed treatment with the aim of decontamination and increase of germination and passing through the separate periods of vegetation with a view to stimulating the growth of the vegetative mass and the reproductive organs, as well as an inhibition of the development of accompanying weed vegetation and selective pathogens.
In the course of 20 years after the establishment of the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry and Oil Chemistry at the National Academy of Sciences of the Ukraine, a new generation of growth regulators were created, characterized by high effectiveness and ecological safety.
Specialists from more than 30 research institutes and other institutions took part in the creation of growth regulators (Ivin, Poteytin, Emistim S., Agrostimulin, Betastimulin, Zeastimulin, Treptolem, Lucis, Charkor, Biolan, Biosil, Biomax, Radostim) in the investigation of the mechanisms of physiological action and in the toxicological and ecological studies.
As a result of the joint investigation, several complex biopreparations were obtained, containing the growth regulator BIOLAN and etheric oils and plant extracts manifesting their action in extremely low (nano-) concentrations. In-depth studies of the physicochemical properties of BIOLAN with the help of nuclear magnetic resonance, calorimetry, ultraviolet and infrared spectroscopy and other methods show that the nanobioregulator investigated possesses a number of unique properties that explain to a considerable degree its high growth-regulating activity. The combination of BIOLAN with plant oils and extracts led to the creation of several highly active polyfunctional bioproducts possessing growth-regulating properties, herbicidal and fungicidal potencies that fully conform to the European requirements and norms laid down in Regulations EEC No 2092/91 and EC No 2384/94 on organic production and labelling of organic products.
Source: Bulgarian Academy of Sciences
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