The Effect of Car Engine Oil on Arabidopsis thaliana and Cotswold Winter Vetch/Rye
: MSc by Research in Crop Improvement using Molecular Biotechnology

  • Michelle Barrett

    Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Science by Research


    The aim of this project was to contribute to the knowledge and
    understanding of the behaviour and capabilities of oil degrading
    porous pavement systems (PPS) with particular reference to planted
    surfaces constructed of a variety of recycled materials.
    Previous research has been performed on the effects of oil on
    Panicum virgatum, Festuca arundinacea and Cajanus cajan and has
    examined their oil biodegradation traits. Showing a decrease in
    e·r growth, they also tolerated the presence of oil and enhanced
    biodegradatio . Arabidopsis thaliana and winter rye were subjected
    to growth in 0·1-contaminated growing medium in this project. Both
    plant species showed physical changes, their growth being impeded
    and alterations in the colour of their leaves on exposure to oil.
    Whole gene probing of mRNA of Arabidopsis also showed
    amplification in seven genes that provided tolerance to water and
    drought stresses.
    Previous experiments at Coventry University showed that
    eukaryotic organisms gave good indications of oil degrading
    capabilities. This project indicated that there was greater diversity
    of these species in the planted PPS than in the non-planted PPS
    laboratory models. The granite and recycled material sub-bases
    also produced no significant leakage of oil in the effluent from the
    planted PPS. However, further work is required before one might
    conclude that the plants may have aided the degradation or
    retention process.
    Date of AwardApr 2005
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • Coventry University
    SupervisorJaney Henderson (Supervisor), Alan Newman (Supervisor) & James Alun Wynne Morgan (Supervisor)

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