Skip to main content
Log in

The induction of the “turbo reductase” is inhibited by cycloheximide, cordycepin and ethylene inhibitors in Fe-deficient cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) plants

  • Published:
Protoplasma Aims and scope Submit manuscript


Dicotyledonous plants respond to Fe deficiency by enhancing the capacity of their roots to reduce Fe(III) to Fe(II). It has been suggested that there are two different ferric redox systems in the roots: the standard reductase, active with ferricyanide and not inducible by Fe deficiency, and the turbo reductase, active with both ferricyanide and ferric chelates and inducible by Fe deficiency. We have used different experimental approaches to test whether or not the Fe(III)-reducing capacity of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L. cv. Ashley) roots can be explained by considering the standard and the turbo reductase as the same enzyme. For this, we used both Fe-sufficient and Fe-deficient plants, which were treated with ethylene inhibitors (cobalt or silver thiosulfate; found to inhibit the turbo reductase in a previous work), a protein synthesis inhibitor (cycloheximide), or an mRNA polyadenylation inhibitor (cordycepin). At different times after application of these inhibitors, reduction of both ferricyanide and Fe(III)-EDTA were determined. In addition, we studied the effects of pH and temperature on the reduction of ferricyanide and Fe(III)-EDTA by both Fe-sufficient and Fe-deficient plants. Results suggest that there are, at least, two different ferric redox systems in the roots. Enhancement of Fe(III)-reducing capacity (turbo reductase) by Fe-deficient plants probably requires the de novo synthesis of a (or several) protein(s), which has a high turnover rate and whose expression is presumably regulated by ethylene.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Similar content being viewed by others



ferric chelate reductase




ferricyanide reductase


N,N′-ethylene bis[2-(2-hydroxyphenyl)-glycine]


ethylenediamine-tetraacetic acid


3-(2-pyridyl)-5,6-bis(4-phenylsulfonic acid)-1,2,4-triazine


N-hydroxyethylethylene-diaminetriacetic acid


silver thiosulfate


  • Bagnaresi P, Basso B, Pupillo P (1997) The NADH-dependent Fe3+-chelate reductase of tomato roots. Planta 202: 427–434

    Google Scholar 

  • Bienfait HF (1988) Mechanisms in Fe-efficiency reactions of higher plants. J Plant Nutr 11: 605–629

    Google Scholar 

  • —, Lüttge U (1988) On the function of two systems that can transfer electrons across the plasma membrane. Plant Physiol Biochem 26: 665–671

    Google Scholar 

  • Brown JC, Chaney RL, Ambler JE (1971) A new tomato inefficient in the transport of iron. Physiol Plant 25: 48–53

    Google Scholar 

  • Brüggemann W, Moog PR, Nakagawa H, Janiesch P, Kuiper PJC (1990) Plasma membrane-bound NADH:Fe3+-EDTA reductase and iron deficiency in tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum): is there a Turbo reductase? Physiol Plant 79: 339–346

    Google Scholar 

  • Buckhout TJ, Bell PF, Luster DG, Chaney RL (1989) Iron-stress induced redox activity in tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) is localized on the plasma membrane. Plant Physiol 90: 151–156

    Google Scholar 

  • Dancis A, Roman DG, Anderson GJ, Hinnebush AG, Klausner RD (1992) Ferric reductase ofSaccharomyces cerevisiae: molecular characterization, role in iron uptake, and transcriptional control by iron. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 89: 3869–3873

    Google Scholar 

  • Eide D, Davis-Kaplan S, Jordan I, Sipe D, Kaplan J (1992) Regulation of iron uptake inSaccharomyces cerevisiae: the ferrireductase and Fe(II) transporter are regulated independently. J Biol Chem 267: 20774–20781

    Google Scholar 

  • Galling G (1982) Use (and misuse) of inhibitors in gene expression. In: Parthier B, Boulter D (eds) Encyclopedia of plant physiology, vol 14B. Springer, Berlin Heidelberg New York, pp 663–677

    Google Scholar 

  • Georgatsou E, Alexandraki D (1994) Two distinctly regulated genes are required for ferric reduction, the first step of iron uptake inSaccharomyces cerevisiae. Mol Cell Biol 14: 3065–3073

    Google Scholar 

  • Holden MJ, Luster DG, Chaney RL, Buckhout TJ, Robinson C (1991) Fe3+-chelate reductase activity of plasma membrane isolated from tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) roots. Plant Physiol 97: 537–544

    Google Scholar 

  • — — — (1992a) Purification of NADH-dependent Fe3+-chelate reductase from root plasma membrane of Fe deficient tomatoes. Plant Physiol 99 Suppl: 786

    Google Scholar 

  • — — —, Buckhout TJ (1992b) Enzymology of ferric chelate reduction at the root plasma membrane. J Plant Nutr 15: 1667–1678

    Google Scholar 

  • Kochian LV, Lucas W (1991) Do plasmalemma oxidoreductases play a role in plant mineral ion transport? In: Crane FL, Morré J, Löw HE (eds) Oxidoreduction at the plasma membrane: relation to growth and transport, vol 2, plants. CRC Press, Boca Raton, pp 189–205

    Google Scholar 

  • Lau O, Yang SF (1976) Inhibition of ethylene production by cobaltous ion. Plant Physiol 58: 114–117

    Google Scholar 

  • Lesuisse E, Labbe P (1994) Reductive iron assimilation inSaccharomyces cerevisiae. In: Winkelmann G, Winge DR (eds) Metals ions in fungi. Marcel Dekker, New York, pp 149–178

    Google Scholar 

  • Liu J, Mukherjee I, Reid DM (1990) Adventitious rooting in hypocotyls of sunflower (Helianthus annuus) seedlings III: the role of ethylene. Physiol Plant 78: 268–276

    Google Scholar 

  • Low PS, Merida JR (1996) The oxidative burst in plant defense: function and signal transduction. Physiol Plant 96: 533–542

    Google Scholar 

  • Moog PR, Brüggemann W (1995) Iron reductase systems on the plasma membrane: a review. In: Abadía J (ed) Iron nutrition in soils and plants. Kluwer, Dordrecht, pp 343–362

    Google Scholar 

  • Rennenberg H, Kemper O, Thoene B (1989) Recovery of sulfate transport into heterotrophic tobacco cells from inhibition by reduced glutathione. Physiol Plant 76: 271–276

    Google Scholar 

  • Roman DG, Dancis A, Anderson GJ, Klausner RD (1993) The fission yeast ferric reductase genefrpl + is required for ferric iron uptake and encodes a protein that is homologous to the gp91phox subunit of the human NADH phagocyte oxidoreductase. Mol Cell Biol 13: 4342–4350

    Google Scholar 

  • Romera FJ, Alcántara E (1994) Iron-deficiency stress responses in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) roots: a possible role for ethylene? Plant Physiol 105: 1133–1138

    Google Scholar 

  • Schmidt W (1994) Reduction of extracytoplasmatic acceptors by roots ofPlantago lanceolata L.: evidence for enzyme heterogeneity. Plant Sci 100: 139–146

    Google Scholar 

  • — (1995) Effects of various inhibitors on in vivo reduction byPlantago lanceolata L. roots. In: Abadía J (ed) Iron nutrition in soils and plants. Kluwer, Dordrecht, pp 77–82

    Google Scholar 

  • - Bartels M (1997) Topography of the NADH-linked ferric chelate (Turbo) reductase in plasma membranes fromPlantago plants. In: Proceeding 9m International Symposium on Iron Nutrition and Interactions in Plants, Stuttgart, Federal Republic of Germany, p 58

  • Schmidt W, Schuck C (1996) Pyridine nucleotide pool size changes in iron-deficientPlantago lanceolata roots during reduction of external oxidants. Physiol Plant 98: 215–221

    Google Scholar 

  • Sueyosbi K, Hirata O, Oji Y (1997) Characterization of plasma membrane-bound Fe3+-reductase from Fe-deficient and Fe-sufficient cucumber roots. Soil Sci Plant Nutr 43: 149–156

    Google Scholar 

  • Susín S, Abadía A, Gónzalez-Reyes JA, Lucena JJ, Abadía J (1996) The pH requirement for in vivo activity of the iron-deficiencyinduced “Turbo” ferric chelate reductase. Plant Physiol 110: 111–123

    Google Scholar 

  • Valenti V, Scalorbi M, Guerrini F (1991) Induction of plasma membrane NADH-ferricyanide reductase following iron stress in tomato roots. Plant Physiol Biochem 29: 249–255

    Google Scholar 

  • Veen H (1983) Silver thiosulphate: an experimental tool in plant science. Sci Hortic 20: 211–224

    Google Scholar 

  • Xing T, Higgins VJ, Blumwald E (1997) Race-specific elicitors ofCladosporium fulvum promote translocation of cytosolic components of NADPH oxidase to the plasma membrane of tomato cells. Plant Cell 9: 249–259

    Google Scholar 

  • Yang SF, Hoffman NE (1984) Ethylene biosynthesis and its regulation in higher plants. Annu Rev Plant Physiol 35: 155–189

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Romera, F.J., Alcántara, E. & de la Guardia, M.D. The induction of the “turbo reductase” is inhibited by cycloheximide, cordycepin and ethylene inhibitors in Fe-deficient cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) plants. Protoplasma 205, 156–162 (1998).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: