Najia Shwerif najia

Name: Najia Shwerif

Email address:

Project title: Effects of temperature regimes under low light conditions on growth rate and Phytochemical composition of lettuce and carrot plants

Supervisors:  Dr Kirsten Brandt and Dr Stephen Wilcockson

Research groupFood Quality and Health Group

Funding source: The Higher Education Ministry of Libya

Project description

Environmental conditions such as temperature have a large impact on the growth and development of plants. Lettuce and carrot contain phytochemicals (secondary metabolites) with high nutritional value. The temperature conditions that the plant is grown in may affect the content of phytochemicals, which in turn affects the quality of crops. In view of climate change this may be important for the supply of human food resources for a growing population, if the increase of temperature systematically affects food quality.

The objective of this project was to determine the effects of different growth temperatures on plant growth parameters and nutritionally relevant phytochemicals in different varieties of lettuce and carrots. Plants of two varieties each of carrots and lettuce were grown in controlled environments at different day/night temperatures. The light was constant 150 µmol /m2/s with an 11-hr-light/13-hr-dark cycle.

The results showed that temperature had a highly significant effect on growth parameters. Concentrations of phytochemicals were also affected significantly by growth temperature.

These effects could become increasingly important aspects as climate change and global warming proceeds with potentially substantial implications for the links between diet and human health.

Why did you choose to study at Newcastle University?

I found a high range in my School in Newcastle University, and what I heard about the wonders of the city.

What do you hope to do after finishing your degree?

I will go back to my country for work there.