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Effects of Cadmium Stress on Root and Root Border cells of some vegetable species with different types of Root Meristem


Feng, Y and Liu, H and Zhang, X and Li, X and Zhang, J and Shi, L and Chen, X and Nong, W and Wang, C and Shabala, S and Yu, M, Effects of Cadmium Stress on Root and Root Border cells of some vegetable species with different types of Root Meristem, Life, 12, (9) Article 1401. ISSN 2075-1729 (2022) [Refereed Article]

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2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license, (

DOI: doi:10.3390/life12091401


Cadmium is one of the most toxic heavy metals and can be easily absorbed by plants, affecting root growth. Root border cells (RBCs), that are located in the periphery of the root cap and originate from the root cap meristem, represent a convenient tool to study the toxic effects of Cd on root performance. In this work, vegetables with contrasting types of root apical meristem (RAM) organizations were used. The open RAM organizations included pea and cucumber, and the closed RAM organizations included tomato, chili, and eggplant. The number of RBCs were significantly higher in the species possessing open RAM organization: pea (11,330 cells per root) > cucumber (8200) > tomato (2480) > eggplant (1830) > chili (1320). The same trend was observed for cell viability: pea (61%) > cucumber (59%) > tomato (49%) > eggplant (44%) > chili (42%). Pea and cucumber had higher relative radicle elongation rates and a lower increase in stress-induced accumulation of malondialdehyde (MDA), making them more resistant to Cd stress than the vegetables with close RAM organization. Under Cd treatment, the number and viability of RBCs in vegetables with both types of RAM organization were significantly decreased. However, the decreasing ratio of the number and viability of RBCs in pea and cucumber was higher than in tomato, chili, and eggplant. Taken together, the plants with the open-type RAM are more tolerant to Cd, and it can be speculated that the cadmium tolerance of the vegetables may be correlated with the number and viability of RBCs in response to cadmium stress.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:cadmium; heavy metal; toxicity
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Plant biology
Research Field:Plant physiology
Objective Division:Plant Production and Plant Primary Products
Objective Group:Horticultural crops
Objective Field:Protected vegetable crops
UTAS Author:Shabala, S (Professor Sergey Shabala)
ID Code:155169
Year Published:2022
Deposited By:Agriculture and Food Systems
Deposited On:2023-01-31
Last Modified:2023-02-08
Downloads:11 View Download Statistics

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