Journal Article

Magnesium is More Efficient than Calcium in Alleviating Aluminum Rhizotoxicity in Soybean and its Ameliorative Effect is not Explained by the Gouy-Chapman-Stern Model

Ivo R. Silva, Thomas J. Smyth, Daniel W. Israel, Charles D. Raper and Thomas W. Rufty

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 42, issue 5, pages 538-545
Published in print May 2001 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online May 2001 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pcp/pce066
Magnesium is More Efficient than Calcium in Alleviating Aluminum
Rhizotoxicity in Soybean and its Ameliorative Effect is not Explained by
the Gouy-Chapman-Stern Model

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The mechanistic basis for cation amelioration of Al rhizotoxicity in soybean was investigated through a series of studies comparing protective effects of Ca and Mg against Al inhibition of root elongation in a background 0.8 mM CaSO4 solution (pH 4.3). A modified Gouy-Chapman-Stern model was used to evaluate the effect of cations on electrical potential and Al3+ activity at root plasma membrane surfaces. Activities of Al3+ up to 4.6 µM in the background solution inhibited soybean tap root elongation by more than 80%. There was little or no response in root elongation when Ca and Mg were added to background solutions in the absence of Al. When added to Al-toxic solutions in the micromolar concentration range, Mg was 100-fold more effective than Ca in alleviating Al toxicity, whereas both cations were equally effective when added in the millimolar concentration range. The protective effect of micromolar additions of Mg on root elongation was specific for Al and it failed to alleviate La rhizotoxicity. In contrast to wheat, Mg amelioration of Al toxicity to soybean root elongation at low Mg concentration could not be explained by changes in potential and Al3+ activity at the root plasma membrane surfaces as predicted by a Gouy-Chapman-Stern model. These results suggest that Mg is not acting as an indifferent cation when present at low concentration and implies the involvement of a mechanism other than pure electrostatic effects at the root surface.

Keywords: Key words: Aluminum toxicity — Calcium — Cation amelioration — Gouy-Chapman-Stern model — Magnesium — Soybean.; Abbreviations: Al, aluminum; Ca, calcium; La, lanthanum; Mg, magnesium; Mn, manganese; Ψm, root cell surface electrical potential; {Mn+}m, cation activities at the plasma-membrane surface.

Journal Article.  4682 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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