Expression of specific genes involved in Cd uptake, translocation, vacuolar compartmentalisation and recycling in Populus alba Villafranca clone

Chiara Romè, Xin-Yuan Huang, John Danku, David E Salt, Luca Sebastiani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)


Cadmium (Cd) is a heavy metal toxic to humans and its occurrence in soils represents a significant environmental problem. Poplar trees may provide one possible option to help remove Cd contamination from soil. However, before this is practicable, the ability of poplar to accumulate Cd needs to be enhanced. A better understanding of the genes involved in Cd accumulation in poplar would help to achieve this goal. Here, we monitored the expression of genes known to be involved in Cd uptake, accumulation and translocation from other species, in order to provide information on their potential role in Cd accumulation in poplar. Cd concentration in poplar was significantly higher in roots than in stem and leaves in Cd treated plants. Expression of the poplar homologues of IRT1, NRAMP and OPT3 was initially increased after exposure to Cd but reduced after longer term Cd exposure. Exposure to Cd also influenced the accumulation of Fe, Ca, Cu, Mg and Mn in poplar. In particular, Cd treated plants had a higher concentration of Fe, Ca, Cu, and Mg in leaves and stem compared to control plants after one day and one week of experiment; while in roots after one month Cd treated plants had a lower concentration of Mn, Fe, Cu, Co, and Mg.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-91
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Plant Physiology
Early online date16 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2016



  • abiotic stress tolerance
  • essential elements
  • gene expression
  • heavy metal contaminations
  • Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry
  • phytoremediation

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