, Volume 24, Issue 10, pp 2224–2232 | Cite as

Long-distance transport of cadmium from roots to leaves of Solanum melongena

  • Qin Qin
  • Xuemei Li
  • Jie Zhuang
  • Liping Weng
  • Wan Liu
  • Peidong TaiEmail author


In this study, the characteristics of cadmium (Cd) uptake by roots and translocation from roots to leaves of two eggplant species (Solanum melongena and Solanum torvum) under relatively low Cd concentrations were investigated using stable 108Cd isotope through a number of hydroponic experiments. The uptake and translocation of 108Cd was compared with those of 70Zn and 15N. The results showed more 108Cd was loaded to the vascular channels and translocated upward to the leaves in S. melongena than in S. torvum, while the 108Cd concentrations were significantly lower in the roots of S. melongena than in S. torvum. When the phloem and xylem were wounded by grafting treatments, the foliar 108Cd concentrations were decreased by more than 66 % regardless of the rootstock species, whereas the uptake of 108Cd in the root was not inhibited by grafting. Similar grafting effects were observed for 70Zn. Hence, wounding phloem and xylem by grafting disturbed the upward transport of 108Cd and 70Zn to the eggplant leaves. Similarly, interruption of the phloem by the girdling treatment reduced the concentrations of 108Cd in the leaves of S. melongena by approximately 51 %, though the uptake of 108Cd by roots was not reduced by the interruption of phloem. In contrast, neither 70Zn concentrations nor stable N isotope ratio (δ15N) values in the roots and leaves of S. melongena were significantly influenced by the interruption of phloem. In conclusion, the phloem played a dominant role in the long-distance transport of Cd from the root to the leaf of S. melongena, whereas the xylem was the main channel for the translocation of Zn and N.


Eggplant (Solanum melongenaGrafting Girdling Heavy metals Phloem Transport 



This research work was financially supported by the National Science & Technology Support Program of China (Grant Number: 2012BAC13B03) and the strategic priority research program of the Chinese Academy of Science (Grant Number: XDB14020204).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Qin Qin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xuemei Li
    • 3
  • Jie Zhuang
    • 4
  • Liping Weng
    • 5
  • Wan Liu
    • 1
  • Peidong Tai
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Pollution Ecology and Environmental EngineeringInstitute of Applied Ecology, Chinese Academy of SciencesShenyangChina
  2. 2.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.College of Chemistry and Life ScienceShenyang Normal UniversityShenyangChina
  4. 4.Department of Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science, Institute for a Secure and Sustainable EnvironmentThe University of TennesseeKnoxvilleUSA
  5. 5.Department of Soil QualityWageningen UniversityWageningenThe Netherlands

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