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Growth and Oxidative Stress of Brittlewort (Nitella pseudoflabellata) in Response to Cesium Exposure

Abstract

The present study evaluated the impact of cesium (133Cs) at four concentrations (0, 0.001, 0.01, and 0.1 mg L−1) on growth, concentrations of chlorophyll and carotenoid pigments, and oxidative stress responses in the charophyte, Nitella pseudoflabellata, over 30 days. Oxidative stress was quantified by measuring anti-oxidant enzyme activities and H2O2 content. When compared with the control, significantly elevated activity levels of the anti-oxidative enzymes ascorbic peroxidase, catalase and guaiacol peroxidase were observed at 0.1 mg L−1 (all p < 0.05), even though the H2O2 level was not significantly elevated. Carotenoid and chlorophyll a and b pigment levels were significantly reduced (all p < 0.05) at Cs exposures of 0.01 and 0.1 mg L−1. Photosynthetic efficiency (i.e., Fv/Fm) was significantly reduced (p < 0.05) at Cs concentrations ≥0.001 mg L−1. Significant reduction (p < 0.05) of plant growth (i.e., shoot length) was also observed after 1 week of exposure at Cs concentrations ≥0.001 mg L−1. Our results suggested that Cs exposure reduced plant growth and affected plant functioning via activating the defense mechanism against oxidative stress in Nitella.

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Acknowledgments

This research was supported financially by grants from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (Research Grant-in-Aid), Japan; River Foundation and the Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science (Wakate-kenkyu B: 25820221). The assistance of others at the Ecological Engineering Laboratory, Saitama University, during laboratory analyses is gratefully acknowledged. Two anonymous reviewers are acknowledged for their constructive comments.

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Correspondence to Md Harun Rashid.

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Atapaththu, K.S.S., Rashid, M.H. & Asaeda, T. Growth and Oxidative Stress of Brittlewort (Nitella pseudoflabellata) in Response to Cesium Exposure. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 96, 347–353 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-016-1736-4

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Keywords

  • Oxidative stress
  • Cesium
  • Antioxidant enzymes
  • Nitella pseudoflabellata