Differences in root surface adsorption, root uptake, subcellular distribution, and chemical forms of Cd between low- and high-Cd-accumulating wheat cultivars

  • Ya-Tao Xiao
  • Zhen-Jie Du
  • Carlos-A Busso
  • Xue-Bin QiEmail author
  • Hai-Qing Wu
  • Wei Guo
  • Da-Fu Wu
Research Article


The differences in the mechanism of cadmium (Cd) accumulation in the grains of different wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cultivars remain unclear. Thus, we conducted a hydroponic experiment in a greenhouse to compare root surface adsorption, root uptake, subcellular distribution, and chemical forms of Cd between low- and high-Cd-accumulating wheat cultivars at seedling stage, to improve our understanding of the differences between cultivars. The results showed that Cd adsorbed on the root surface was mainly in a complexed form, and the total amount of Cd on the Yaomai16 (YM, high-Cd-accumulating genotypes) root surface was higher (p < 0.05) than that on Xinmai9817 (XM, low-Cd-accumulating genotypes). A large amount of Cd ions adsorbed on root surface would cause plant damage and inhibit growth. Comparing the root-to-shoot translocation factors of Cd, the transfer coefficients of YM were 1.017, 1.446, 1.464, and 1.030 times higher than those of XM under 5, 10, 50, and 100 μmol L−1 Cd treatments, respectively. The subcellular distribution of Cd under Cd exposure is mainly in the cell wall and soluble fraction. The proportions of Cd in YM shoot soluble fraction were higher than those in XM, which was the main detoxification mechanism limiting the activity of Cd and may be responsible for low Cd accumulation in grains, while the effects of the chemical forms of Cd on migration and detoxification were not found to be related to Cd accumulation in the kernels.


Winter wheat Cadmium Adsorption Subcellular distribution Chemical forms 



The author would like to extend their sincere gratitude to the Agriculture Water and Soil Environment Field Science Research Station, China, for the permission to carry out the research.

Author contributions

Y.-T.X. performed the experiments and drafted the manuscript. Z.-J.D. and X.-B.Q. provided some guidance in the experiments, and H.-Q.W., W.G., and D.-F.W. have contributed in the analysis of the data and further modifications of the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final version of the manuscript.

Funding information

Financial support for this research was provided by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grand No.51779260, 51679241, 51709265), the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2016YFD0800703), and the Central Public-interest Scientific Institution Basal Research Fund (Farmland Irrigation Research Institute, CAAS, FIRI2017-13).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11356_2019_6708_MOESM1_ESM.docx (15 kb)
Table S1 (DOCX 14 kb)
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Fig. S1 (DOCX 6594 kb)
11356_2019_6708_MOESM3_ESM.docx (5 mb)
Fig. S2 (DOCX 5079 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ya-Tao Xiao
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Zhen-Jie Du
    • 1
    • 2
  • Carlos-A Busso
    • 4
  • Xue-Bin Qi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hai-Qing Wu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Wei Guo
    • 1
    • 2
  • Da-Fu Wu
    • 5
  1. 1.Farmland Irrigation Research InstituteChinese Academy of Agricultural SciencesXinxiangPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of High-Efficient and Safe Utilization of Agriculture Water Resources of CAASXinxiangPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Agricultural SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  4. 4.Departamento de Agronomía-CERZOS (CONICET)Universidad Nacional del SurBahía BlancaArgentina
  5. 5.College of Resources and EnvironmentHenan Institute of Science and TechnologyXinxiangPeople’s Republic of China

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