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On the nature and timing of oxygen radical production following exposure of Arabidopsis thaliana leaves to uranium, cadmium or a combination of both stressors

  • J. Barescut, D. Lariviere, T. Stocki, N. Horemans (a1), N. Vanhoudt (a1), M. Janssens (a1), B. Van Chaze (a1), J. Wannijn (a1), M. Van Hees (a1) and H. Vandenhove (a1)...

Abstract

The toxicity and oxidative stress responses of 19-day old Arabidopsis seedlings induced by U (66 μM) and Cd (20 μM) alone or in a binary mixture set-up (equitoxic mixture) are studied in function of time. After 48h a significant decrease in root and shoot growth and a simultaneous increase in anthocyanin production was evident in all treated plants.

Production of O2 or H2O2 was visualized by staining freshly harvested leaves with nitrobluetetrazolium or diaminobezidine, respectively. With this method production of O2 was only significantly measurable after 168 h treatment which coincides with a significant decrease in biomass production and probably also plant cell death. For Cd treated plants a significant increase in H2O2 production was measurable from 24h onwards. In contrast, a similar H2O2 production could not be measured in U or U + Cd treated plants. Both water and lipophilic soluble antioxidants significantly increased in U treated plants after 48 h. These high antioxidant levels might detoxify potential H2O2 produced in the U treated plants. In contrast for Cd treated plants only after 168h a significant increase in water soluble antioxidants was measured whereas no difference in the lipophilic fraction was visible.

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