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Heavy metals are contaminants of much environmental apprehension, as they are hazardous to human being and other biota. The chelates react with the heavy metals and free that metal from the cation exchange sites and resulting the metal chelated species and move readily into the soil. For this purpose, a hydroponic stud was conducted in wire house of Saline Agricultural Research Center to monitor the potential of Maize (Zea mays L.) cultivars against cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) toxicity. A chelated source Ethylene Diamine Tetra Acetic acid (EDTA) was used to evaluate the uptake of Cd and Pb. The experiment was comprised of nine treatments. As T1= Control, T2= Cd 25 ppm, T3= Pb 50 ppm, T4= Cd 50 ppm, T5= Pb 100 ppm, T6= Cd 25 ppm+EDTA, T7= Cd 50 ppm+EDTA, T8= Pb 50 ppm+EDTA and T9= Pb 100 ppm+EDTA. Two maize cultivars Syngenta-8711 and 33H-25 were used. It was concluded that the parameters like shoot fresh and dry weight, chlorophyll content (SPAD value) and relative water content decreased under toxic level of Cadmium (Cd) and Lead (Pb). The addition of EDTA increased the uptake of Cd and Pb which ultimately reduced the overall the plant growth. Among the maize hybrids, maximum Cd concentration was observed in Syngenta-33-H-25 while minimum in Syngenta-8711 at all cadmium stress levels. At all the lead stress levels the maximum Pb concentration was observed in Syngenta-33-H-25. The minimum Pb concentration was recorded in Syngenta-8711 at all lead stress levels.
Keywords: Cadmium; Chelated; Chlorophyll content; Lead; Maize