Journal of Medicinal Plants Research
Vol.5(33) , pp. 7108-7118 , December 2011
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A critical review on halophytes: Salt tolerant plants
Roohi Aslam¹, Nazish Bostan², Nabgha-e-Amen¹, Maleeha Maria² and Waseem Safdar3*
¹Department of Biological Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.
²Department of Biological Sciences, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Islamabad, Pakistan.
3Department of Biochemistry, PMAS Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi, Pakistan.
Accepted 03 November 2011
Present work deals with the different mechanisms which are present in salt tolerant plants against high salt concentrations of the soil by combining information from different research papers to make a comprehensive account of halophytes. It covers all the aspects of halophytes regarding their classification, mechanisms against high salt concentrations (both at physiological and molecular level). Furthermore, the article discusses the importance of halophytes and some aspects regarding the transformation of non-salt tolerant plants to salt tolerant plants. ~400 million hectares land is affected by salinity and this area is increasing day by day due to excessive irrigation practices also the world population is tremendously increasing hence we need a large amount of food supply. The crops cannot be grown on a salt affected land but nature has provided us with a unique group of plants that is, halophytes. Owing to the consumption of fossil fuels we need the fuel that can be obtained from plants and halophytes can be a good approach in this respect. They can be grown on salt affected lands, by identifying the genes present in them functioning against salinity production of transgenic crops can be done.
Key words: Salt stress, stress genes, transgenic plants, molecular mechanisms, ion compartmentalization, halophytes.