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Alvaro Standardi and Fausto Romani

In vitro-proliferated shoots of `Delicious' and `Starkspur Red' apples (Malus domestica Borkh.) were submitted for 1 week to root induction in the dark with their basal parts in liquid medium containing 1.5 μm IBA and 43.4 mm sucrose. The shoots were transferred to root initiation and root elongation medium made up of plugs wetted with half-strength Lepoivre salts. When antioxidants, such as PVP, GH, 2-Me, and DIECA, were added to the liquid induction medium, the percentages of rooting usually decreased. In contrast, if the antioxidants PVP and citric acid were added in the initiation-elongation medium, the percentages of rooting increased. The results agree with the finding of other researchers who proposed a rapid increase in peroxidase activity during root induction followed by a fast decline during rooting initiation as a marker for good rooting responses. Moreover, the use of antioxidants both in induction and in initiation-elongation had no effect on number and length of roots. Chemical names used: polyvinylpyrrolidone-40 (PVP); glutathione reduced (GH); 2-mercaptoethanol (2-Me); diethyldithiocarbamic acid, sodium salt trihydrate (DIECA); N-(phenylmethyl) 1 H-purin-6-amine (BA); 1 H-indole-3-butyric acid (IBA); gibberellic acid (GA3).