Attribution: This is a cached copy of a third party project. Many of these sites are from 20 years ago and the majority are no longer running. We show only the first page of the project. We do not save all pages since copyright belongs to the third-party author.
The Effect of Growth Hormones on Irradiated Lima Beans Objectives/Goals: Our objective was to determine what effect growth hormone supplementation had on irradiated lima beans. Methods/Materials: Forty-eight lima beans were irradiated with high-energy X-rays at Providence St. Joseph's hospital. Sixteen beans were irradiated at 10,000 rads, sixteen beans at 30,000 rads, and sixteen beans at 60,000 rads. In addition, sixteen beans were not irradiated and served as controls. Following irradiation, the lima beans were placed in a hydroponic germination station, where they were exposed to artificial light 16 hours of every 24-hour period, for nine consecutive days. Half of the beans were given growth hormone supplementation (Hormex Growth Hormone) and half were hydrated with clean water only. After nine days, the plants were uprooted and the stem and root lengths were measured. Results: Lima bean growth was severely stunted at radiation levels of 30,000 and 60,000 rads, since the beans that were irradiated at these levels germinated and then stopped growing altogether. When we compared the data taken from the plants supplemented with growth hormone, the hormone-treated plants generally had longer roots, yet shorted stems. Strangely, at 60,000 rads, there were a few centimeters of stem growth on most plants, yet no visible root growth. Conclusions/Discussion: Although the growth hormone did not repair stem length damage in the irradiated plants, it did slightly increase root length. The increase of root length in Hormex-watered plants suggests that the growth hormone may be able to make up for the damage inflicted by the radiation. When we began, we had little knowledge of radiation and how it works. This study helped us to learn about radiation and its impact on plant growth. We will continue our studies of Hormex's potentially beneficial effects on radiation damage over the summer using considerably larger control and variable groups to achieve more valid results.