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Sorgoleone from Sorghum bicolor as a Potent Bioherbicide

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Biotechnology, Sathyabama University, Chennai-600 119, Tamilnadu, INDIA
  • 2Department of Plant Biology and Biotechnology, Loyola College, Chennai- 600 034, INDIA
  • 3Entomology Research Institute, Loyola College, Chennai- 600 034, INDIA

Res. J. Recent Sci., Volume 3, Issue (ISC-2013), Pages 32-36, (2014)


Sorgoleone is an allelopathic chemical released from the root exudates of the dryland cereal crop, Sorghum bicolor. It is predominately concentrated in the living root hairs of sorghum. The root hairs of juvenile plants produce higher content of sorgoleone. Its ability to suppress and inhibit the growth of weeds without affecting the crop species offers a promising platform to mark its use as a potential bioherbicide. Weeds with broadleaf and grass weeds were reported to be susceptible to the herbicidal activity of sorgoleone. The pre-emergence and post-emergence applications of sorgoleone strongly inhibited the growth of different weeds in both greenhouse and field conditions. Sorgoleone is a hydrophobic molecule that persists in the soil for a longer duration, thereby adding to its sustainable herbicidal activity. Besides, its allelopathic potential enables its use in crop rotation to protect the soils vulnerable to support the growth of weeds. The mechanisms of its phytotoxic activity focus on the inhibition of photosynthetic apparatus in lower plants by interfering with the uptake of solutes and water molecules. Further it is also a potent inhibitor of electron transport in chloroplast and mitochondria. The effectiveness of the herbicidal activity of sorgoleone is comparable to that of the synthetic herbicides in commercial use.


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