Plant and Soil

, Volume 241, Issue 1, pp 121–128 | Cite as

Uptake of 59Fe from soluble 59Fe-humate complexes by cucumber and barley plants

  • S. Cesco
  • M. Nikolic
  • V. Römheld
  • Z. Varanini
  • R. PintonEmail author


The capability of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L., cv. Serpente cinese), a Strategy I plant and barley (Hordeum vulgaris L., cv. Europa), a Strategy II plant to use Fe complexed by a water-soluble humic fraction (WEHS) extracted from a peat, was studied. Uptake of 59Fe from 59Fe-WEHS by cucumber plants was higher at pH 6.0 than at pH 7.5. Roots of intact cucumber plants were able to reduce the FeIII-WEHS complex either at pH 6.0 or 7.5, rates being higher in the assay medium buffered at pH 6.0. After supply of 59Fe-WEHS, a large pool of root extraplasmatic 59Fe was formed, which could be used to a large extent by Fe-deficient plants, particularly under acidic conditions. Uptake of 59Fe from 59Fe-WEHS by Fe-sufficient and Fe-deficient barley plants was examined during periods of high (morning) and low (evening) PS release. Uptake paralleled the diurnal rhythm of PS release. Furthermore, 59Fe uptake was strongly enhanced by addition of PS to the uptake solution in both Fe-sufficient and Fe-deficient plants. High amount of root extraplasmatic 59Fe was formed upon supply of Fe-WEHS, particularly in the evening experiment. Fe-deficient barley plants were able to utilize Fe from the root extraplasmatic pool, conceivably as a result of high rates of PS release. The results of the present work together with previous observations indicate that cucumber plants (Strategy I) utilize Fe complexed to WEHS, presumably via reduction of FeIII-WEHS by the plasma membrane-bound reductase, while barley plants (Strategy II) use an indirect mechanism involving ligand exchange between WEHS and PS.

Cumumis sativus extraplasmatic root iron Hordeum vulgaris humic substances iron deficiency iron uptake 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Cesco
    • 1
  • M. Nikolic
    • 2
  • V. Römheld
    • 3
  • Z. Varanini
    • 1
  • R. Pinton
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Dipartimento di Produzione Vegetale e Tecnologie AgrarieUniversity of UdineUdineItaly
  2. 2.Faculty of AgricultureUniversity of BelgradeBelgradeYugoslavia
  3. 3.Institut für Pflanzenernährung (330)University of HohenheimGermany

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