Journal Article

Enhanced root-to-shoot translocation of cadmium in the hyperaccumulating ecotype of <i>Sedum alfredii</i>

Ling-li Lu, Sheng-ke Tian, Xiao-e Yang, Xiao-chang Wang, Patrick Brown, Ting-qiang Li and Zhen-li He

in Journal of Experimental Botany

Published on behalf of Society for Experimental Biology

Volume 59, issue 11, pages 3203-3213
Published in print August 2008 | ISSN: 0022-0957
Published online July 2008 | e-ISSN: 1460-2431 | DOI:

Show Summary Details


Sedum alfredii (Crasulaceae) is the only known Cd-hyperaccumulating species that are not in the Brassica family; the mechanism of Cd hyperaccumulation in this plant is, however, little understood. Here, a combination of radioactive techniques, metabolic inhibitors, and fluorescence imaging was used to contrast Cd uptake and translocation between a hyperaccumulating ecotype (HE) and a non-hyperaccumulating ecotype (NHE) of S. alfredii. The Km of 109Cd influx into roots was similar in both ecotypes, while the Vmax was 2-fold higher in the HE. Significant inhibition of Cd uptake by low temperature or metabolic inhibitors was observed in the HE, whereas the effect was less pronounced in the NHE. 109Cd influx into roots was also significantly decreased by high Ca in both ecotypes. The rate of root-to-shoot translocation of 109Cd in the HE was >10 times higher when compared with the NHE, and shoots of the HE accumulated dramatically higher 109Cd concentrations those of the NHE. The addition of the metabolic inhibitor carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP) resulted in a significant reduction in Cd contents in the shoots of the HE, and in the roots of the NHE. Cd was distributed preferentially to the root cylinder of the HE but not the NHE, and there was a 3–5 times higher Cd concentration in xylem sap of the HE in contrast to the NHE. These results illustrate that a greatly enhanced rate of root-to-shoot translocation, possibly as a result of enhanced xylem loading, rather than differences in the rate of root uptake, was the pivotal process expressed in the Cd hyperaccumulator HE S. alfredii.

Keywords: Cadmium; hyperaccumulation; Sedum alfredii; translocation; uptake

Journal Article.  6851 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.