Assessment of photo-modulation, nutrient-use efficiency and toxicity of iron nanoparticles in Vigna radiata
Sustainable agricultural practices are in high demand taking into account the environmental pollution and toxicity generated by commercial fertilizers. In order to address such a specific issue, here in we propose iron nanoparticle (FeNP) as a suitable alternative of commercially available iron-salt based fertilizers. Being a micronutrient, excess or deficiency of iron creates toxic response within the plant systems. Taking this lofty challenge in hand, we deliberately applied FeNP within mung bean plant taken as a model plant system. FeNP showed great promises in enhancement of morphological attributes and pigment contents; meanwhile FeNP improvised the photochemical as well as carbon assimilatory pathway. FeNP outclassed the harmful effect of commercially available iron-fertilizers; even the cellular machinery was well protected and was devoid of any kind of toxic or stress response. Biophysical analysis revealed FeNP modulated the activity of FeS protein for such an overwhelming response. Meanwhile, brief biosafety study confirmed its biocompatibility for practical applications. We envisioned the promising potential of FeNP in sustainable agricultural practices.