Journal Article

Aluminum Targets Elongating Cells by Reducing Cell Wall Extensibility in Wheat Roots

Jian Feng Ma, Renfang Shen, Sakiko Nagao and Eiichi Tanimoto

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 45, issue 5, pages 583-589
Published in print May 2004 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online May 2004 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pcp/pch060
Aluminum Targets Elongating Cells by Reducing Cell Wall Extensibility in Wheat Roots

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  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular and Cell Biology
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Phytotoxicity of aluminum is characterized by a rapid inhibition of root elongation at micromolar concentrations, however, the mechanisms primarily responsible for this response are not well understood. We investigated the effect of Al on the viscosity and elasticity parameters of root cell wall by a creep-extension analysis in two cultivars of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) differing in Al resistance. The root elongation and both viscous and elastic extensibility of cell wall of the root apices were hardly affected by the exposure to 10 µM Al in an Al-resistant cultivar, Atlas 66. However, similar exposure rapidly inhibited root elongation in an Al-sensitive cultivar, Scout 66 and this was associated with a time-dependent accumulation of Al in the root tissues with more than 77% residing in the cell wall. Al caused a significant decrease in both the viscous and elastic extensibility of cell wall of the root apices of Scout 66. The “break load” of the root apex of Scout 66 was also decreased by Al. However, neither the viscosity nor elasticity of the cell wall was affected by in vitro Al treatment. Furthermore, pre-treatment of seedlings with Al in conditions where root elongation was slow (i.e. low temperature) did not affect the subsequent elongation of roots in a 0 Al treatment at room temperature. These results suggest that the Al-dependent changes in the cell wall viscosity and elasticity are involved in the inhibition of root growth. Furthermore, for Al to reduce cell wall extensibility it must interact with the cell walls of actively elongating cells.

Keywords: Keywords: Aluminum toxicity — Cell wall — Extensibility — Root elongation — Triticum aestivum L.

Journal Article.  4843 words.  Illustrated.

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

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