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Accumulation and distribution of Zn in the shoots and reproductive structures of the halophyte plant species Kosteletzkya virginica as a function of salinity

Han, Ruiming, Quinet, Muriel, André, Emilie, van Elteren, Johannes Teun, Destrebecq, Florence, Vogel-Mikuš, Katarina, Cui, Guangling, Debeljak, Marta, Lefèvre, Isabelle, Lutts, Stanley
Planta 2013 v.238 no.3 pp. 441-457
absorption, endosperm, halophytes, heavy metals, ions, lasers, leaves, mature plants, nutrient film technique, nutrition, photosynthesis, plant growth, salinity, salt marshes, seed maturation, seed yield, seedlings, seeds, shoots, sodium chloride, spectroscopy, testa, toxicity, zinc
Kosteletzkya virginica is a wetland halophyte that is a good candidate for rehabilitation of degraded salt marshes and production of oil as biodiesel. Salt marshes are frequently contaminated by heavy metals. The distribution of Zn in vegetative and reproductive organs of adult plants, and the NaCl influence on this distribution remain unknown and were thus explored in the present study. Plants were cultivated in a nutrient film technique system, from seedling stage until seed maturation in a control, Zn (100 μM), NaCl (50 mM) or Zn + NaCl medium. Photosynthesis, ion nutrition, malondialdehyde and non-protein thiol concentrations were quantified. Zinc distribution in reproductive organs was estimated by a laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry procedure (LA-ICP-MS). Adult plants accumulated up to 2 mg g(-1) DW Zn in the shoots. Zinc reduced plant growth, inhibited photosynthesis and reduced seed yield. Zinc accumulation in the seeds was only two times higher in Zn-treated plants than in controls. Exogenous NaCl neutralized the damaging action of Zn and modified the Zn distribution through a preferential accumulation of toxic ions in older leaves. Zinc was present in seed testa, endosperm and, to a lower extent, in embryo. Additional NaCl induced a chalazal retention of Zn during seed maturation and reduced final Zn seed content. It is concluded that NaCl 50 mM had a positive impact on the response of K. virginica to Zn toxicity and acts through a modification in Zn distribution rather than a decrease in Zn absorption.