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Influence of Hydrocarbons on Plant Cell Ultrastructure and Main Metabolic Enzymes

Authors: T. Sadunishvili, E. Kvesitadze, M. Betsiashvili, N. Kuprava, G. Zaalishvili, G. Kvesitadze


Influence of octane and benzene on plant cell ultrastructure and enzymes of basic metabolism, such as nitrogen assimilation and energy generation have been studied. Different plants: perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) and alfalfa (Medicago sativa); crops- maize (Zea mays L.) and bean (Phaseolus vulgaris); shrubs – privet (Ligustrum sempervirens) and trifoliate orange (Poncirus trifoliate); trees - poplar (Populus deltoides) and white mulberry (Morus alba L.) were exposed to hydrocarbons of different concentrations (1, 10 and 100 mM). Destructive changes in bean and maize leaves cells ultrastructure under the influence of benzene vapour were revealed at the level of photosynthetic and energy generation subcellular organells. Different deviations at the level of subcellular organelles structure and distribution were observed in alfalfa and ryegrass root cells under the influence of benzene and octane, absorbed through roots. The level of destructive changes is concentration dependent. Benzene at low 1 and 10 mM concentration caused the increase in glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) activity in maize roots and leaves and in poplar and mulberry shoots, though to higher extent in case of lower, 1mM concentration. The induction was more intensive in plant roots. The highest tested 100mM concentration of benzene was inhibitory to the enzyme in all plants. Octane caused induction of GDH in all grassy plants at all tested concentrations; however the rate of induction decreased parallel to increase of the hydrocarbon concentration. Octane at concentration 1 mM caused induction of GDH in privet, trifoliate and white mulberry shoots. The highest, 100mM octane was characterized by inhibitory effect to GDH activity in all plants. Octane had inductive effect on malate dehydrogenase in almost all plants and tested concentrations, indicating the intensification of Trycarboxylic Acid Cycle. The data could be suggested for elaboration of criteria for plant selection for phytoremediation of oil hydrocarbons contaminated soils.

Keywords: Higher plants, hydrocarbons, cell ultrastructure, glutamate and malate dehydrogenases.

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