Uptake, Translocation, Accumulation, Transformation, and Generational Transmission of Nanoparticles in Plants

  • Pradeep Kumar ShuklaEmail author
  • Pragati Misra
  • Chittaranjan Kole


The field of plant nanotechnology has recently been up-surged into a new epoch of discovery to dissect the intricate processes and mechanisms for better understanding of plant’s functional biology in response to nanoparticle exposure. This chapter reviews the current scenario of pathways, mechanisms, and patterns of uptake, translocation, accumulation, transformation, and generational transmission of nanoparticles in plants. Experimental data support that symplastic route is the dominant and highly regulated pathway for transporting NPs within plants and facilitated by a vast array of carrier proteins, aquaporins, interconnected ion channels, endocytosed pathway, or novel pores for the entry of nanoparticles. Xylem being the most preferred plant tissue along with phloem and stomatal opening for absorption and transportation of nanoparticles. Engineered and carbon-based nanoparticles have shown different responses for their transport and utilization in different plants. Engineered nanomaterials are translocated and accumulated differentially within stems, leaves, trichomes, petioles, and fruits of different plants. At subcellular locations, engineered nanomaterials are accumulated in cell walls, cytoplasm, seldom plastids, nuclei, and small vesicles. Carbon-based nanomaterials have shown superior prospective for internalization. Uptake, accumulation, and generational transmission of NOM-suspended carbon nanopartcles in rice plants have been reported. Uptake and biodistribution of fullerol was confirmed almost in all plant organs including petioles, leaves, flowers, and fruits in bitter melon. Carbon nanotubes have shown the possibilities for effective penetration into seed coat. Single-walled carbon nanotubes have shown their capability to penetrate chloroplasts and accumulate on thylakoids and stroma in spinach, whereas, multi-walled carbon nanotubes were observed in the seeds and root systems of the developed tomato seedlings. It is certain that not a single transportation mechanism, but a diverse array of multiple mechanisms at physiological, biochemical, and molecular levels are involved for penetration, acquisition, and in planta trafficking of nanoparticles. The goal of this chapter is to put individual experimental efforts back together to unveil the possible enigmas of mechanisms of internalization of nanoparticles, pathways of their movement, and patterns of accumulation and their generational transmission.


Nanoparticles Engineered nanomaterials Carbon-based nanomaterials Uptake-mechanism Translocation-pattern Generational transmission 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pradeep Kumar Shukla
    • 1
    Email author
  • Pragati Misra
    • 2
  • Chittaranjan Kole
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Biological Sciences, School of Basic SciencesSam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture, Technology and SciencesAllahabadIndia
  2. 2.Department of Molecular and Cellular Engineering, Jacob School of Biotechnology and BioengineeringSam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture, Technology and SciencesAllahabadIndia
  3. 3.Bidhan Chandra Agricultural UniversityMohanpurIndia
  4. 4.Jacob School of Biotechnology and BioengineeringSam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture, Technology and SciencesAllahabadIndia

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