Impact of Cr (VI), Cd and Pb Contamination on Nutrient Composition of One-year old Populus ssp. Seedlings

Document Type : Research Paper



Heavy metals are aggressive environmental pollutants. They are easily taken up by plants and they are strong stress factors for plant metabolisms. Heavy metals influence includes also disturbances in plant mineral nutrition by competition with other nutrients. The specific objective of this research work was to study whether elevated Cr (VI), Cd and Pb Contamination caused an unbalanced nutritional status of leaves and stems/shoots in two poplar species (P. nigra L. and P. alba L.). The experiment was carried out on a pot culture of poplars, growing in an enriched heavy metal soil. The results indicated that Heavy metal enrichments reduced the concentration of all foliar and stem/shoot nutrients (P≤0.05). P.nigra L. in comparison with P. alba L. was more sensitive to Cd and Cr (VI) contamination. The highest and the lowest negative effects on nutrient uptake were belonging to Cd and Pb respectively. Cd contamination at 150 mg kg-1 level lead to 65% reduction in foliar concentration of K in P. nigra L. In presence of 150 mg kg-1 Cd, 78% reduction was observed in P. nigra L. P uptake compare to control. The knowledge about regulatory mechanisms in plant mineral nutrition may help us to solve the problem of plant detoxification during heavy metal stress. However the mechanisms of heavy metal interactions are very complex and still only fragmentarily known.


Alizadeh, S.M., Zahedi Amiri, G., Savaghebi-Firoozabadi, G., Etemad, V., Shirvany, A., Shirmardi, M., 2012a. Influence of soil amendment on cadmium accumulation responses in one-year old Populus alba L. seedling, Iranian Journal of Forest, 3 (4), 355-366. in Persian.
Alizadeh, S.M., Zahedi-Amiri, G., Savaghebi-Firoozabadi, G., Etemad, V., Shirvany, A., Shirmardi, M., 2012b. Assisted phytoremediation of Cd-contaminated soil using poplar rooted cuttings, International Agrophysics, 26, 219-224.Alizadeh, S.M., 2014. The role of organic matter in phytoremediation efficiency of Populus alba L. seedlings in chromium(VI) polluted soil, Journal of Natural Environment, 66 (3), 319-328., in Persian.
Alizadeh, S.M., Zahedi-Amiri, G., Shahriari, M.H., Shirmardi, M., 2014a. Effect of heavy metals (lead, cadmium and chromium) on some root morphological characteristics of P. alba L. and P. nigra L. seedlings, Iranian Journal of Forest, in Press, in Persian.
Alizadeh, S.M., Zahedi-Amiri, G., Shahriari, M.H., Shirmardi, M., 2014b. Induced phytoextraction: effect of amendment on phytoextraction of cadmium by poplar rooted cuttings (Populus nigra L. and Populus alba L.), Int. Journal of Environment and Waste Management, 13(1), 90-103.
Arduini, I., Ercoli, L., Mariotti, M., Masoni, A., 2006. Response of miscanthus to toxic cadmium applications during the period of maximum growth, Environmental and Experimental Botany, 55, 29-40.
Castiglione, S., Franchin, C. Fossati, T., Lingua, G. Torrigiani P., Biondi, S. 2007. High zinc concentrations reduce rooting capacity and alter metallothionein gene expression in white poplar (Populus alba L. cv. Villafranca), Chemosphere, 67, 1117-1126.
Doumett, S., Lamperi, L., Checchini, L., Azzarello, E., Mugnai, S., Mancuso, S., Petruzzelli, G., Del Bubba M., 2008. Heavy metal distribution between contaminated soil and Paulownia tomentosa, in a pilot-scale assisted phytoremediation study: Influence of different complexing agents, Chemosphere 72, 1481–1490.Glick, B.R., 2003. Phytoremediation: synergistic use of plants and bacteria to clean up the environment. Biotechnology Advances, 21, 383-393.
Haque N., Peralta-Videa J.R., Jones, G.L., Gill, T.E., Gardea-Torresdey, J.L., 2008. Screening the phytoremediation potential of desert broom (Baccharis sarothroides Gray) growing on mine tailings in Arizona, USA, Environmental Pollution 153, 362-368.
Huttl, R.F., 1988. ‘‘New type’’ forest declines and restabilisation/revitalization strategies. A programme focus. Water, Air. Soil Pollution 41, 95 111.
Kapusta, F., Godzik, B., 2013. Does heavy metal deposition affect nutrient uptake by moss Pleurozium schreberi? E3S conference proceeding, DOI: 10.1051/e3sconf/20130129005.
Karimi, R., Solhi, S., Salehi, M., Solhi, M., Mollahosaini, H., 2013. Effects of Cd, Pb and Ni on growth and macronutrient contents of Vicia faba L and Brassica arvensis L., International Journal of Agronomy and Plant Production, 4 (4), 739-744.
Kim, I.S., Kang, K.H., Johnson-Green, P., Lee, E.J., 2003. Investigation of heavy metal accumulation in Polygonum thunbergii for phytoextraction, Environmental Pollution, 126, 235-243.
Krupa, Z., 1995. The inhibitory effects of Cd on higher plant photosynthetic apparatus-direct and/or indirect organisms? Folia society science, Lublin, 324 p.
McGrath, S.P., F.J. Zhao & E. Lombi, 2002. Phytoremediation of metals, metalloids, and radionuclides. Advances in Agronomy. 75, 1–56.
Mitch, M.L., 2002. Phytoextraction of toxic metals: a review of biological mechanism, Journal of Environmental Quality, 31, 109-120.
Liu a, J., Kunquan, L., Jiakuan X., Jiansheng, L., Xiaolong, L., Jianchang Y., Qingsen Z., 2003. Interaction of Cd and five mineral nutrients for uptake and accumulation in different rice cultivars and genotypes, Field Crops Research, 83, 271–281.
Oren, R., Schulze, E.D., 1989. Nutritional disharmony and forest decline: a conceptual model. In: Schulze, E.D., Lange, O.L., Oren, R. (Eds.), Forest decline and Air Pollution; A Study of Spruce (Picea abies) on Acid Soils, Springer-Verlag, pp. 425-443.
Palit, S., Sharma, A., Talukder, G., 1994. Effect of cobalt on plants, Botanical Review, 60, 149-181.
Pivetz, B.E., 2001. Phytoremediation of Contaminated Soil and Ground Water at Hazardous Sites. Ground Water Issue, EPA/540/S-01/500.
Pulford, I.D., Watson, C. (2003) ‘Phytoremediation of heavy metal-contaminated land by trees – a review’, Environment International, 29(4), 529–540.
Salt, D.E., Blaylock, M. Kumar, P.B.A.N. Duschenkov, V. Ensley, B.D. Chet I. Raskin, I., 1995. Phytoremediation: a novel strategy for the removal of toxic metals from the environment using plants. Biotechnology (N.Y.), 13, 468–475.
Siedlecka, A., 1995. Some aspects of interactions between heavy metals and plant mineral nutrients, Acta Societatis Botanicorum Poloniae, 64 (3), 265-272.
Siedlecka, A., Baszynski, T., 1993. Inhibition of electron flow around photosystem I in chloroplasts of Cd-treated maize plants is due to Cd-induced iron deficiency, Plant and Soil, 123, 107-111.
Symenoidis, L., Karataglis, S., 1992. Interactive effects of cadmium, lead and zinc on root growth of two metal tolerant genotypes of Halcus Lanatus L., BioMetals, 5, 173-178.
Vicentim, M.P., Ferraz, A., 2007. Enzyme production and chemical alterations of Eucalyptus grandis wood during biodegradation by Ceriporiopsis subvermispora in cultures supplemented with Mn2+, corn steep liquor and glucose. Enzyme and Microbial Technology, 40, 645-652.
Wu, F., Yang, W., Zhang, J., Zhou, L. 2010. Cadmium accumulation and growth responses of a poplar (Populus deltoids × Populus nigra) in cadmium contaminated purple soil and alluvial soil, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 177(3), 268–273.
Yang, R.Y., Tang, J.J., Yang, Y.S., Chen, X., 2007. Invasive and non-invasive plants differ in response to soil heavy metal lead contamination, Botanical Studies, 48, 453-458.
Zaefarian, F., Rezvani, M., Rejali, F., Ardakani, M.R., Noormohammadi, G., 2011. Effect of Heavy Metals and Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungal on Growth and Nutrients (N, P, K, Zn, Cu and Fe) Accumulation of Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.), American-Eurasian Journal of Agriculture & Environmental Science, 11 (3), 346-352.
Zornoza, P., Vazquez, S.E., Steban, E., Fernandez-Pascual, M., Carpena, R., 2002. Cadmium-Stress in nodulated white lupin: Strategies to avoid toxicity Plant, Journal of Physoilogy and Biochemistry, 40, 1003-1009.