How does NaCl improve tolerance to cadmium in the halophyte Sesuvium portulacastrum?

Wali Mariem, Ben Rjab Kilani, Gunsé Benet, Lakdhar Abdelbasset, Lutts Stanley, Poschenrieder Charlotte, Abdelly Chedly, Tahar Ghnaya

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56 Citations (Scopus)


© 2014 Published by Elsevier Ltd. Sesuvium portulacastrum is a halophyte with considerable Cd tolerance and accumulation, especially under high salinity. The species seems a good candidate for phytoremediation of Cd-contaminated, saline soils. However, the mechanisms sustaining salt-induced alleviation of Cd toxicity remain unknown. Seedlings of S. portulacastrum were submitted hydroponically to different Cd concentrations (0, 25 and 50μM Cd) in combination with low (0.09mM), or high (200mM) NaCl. Cadmium distribution within leaves and stems was assessed by total Cd, cell sap Cd, and Cd in different cell fractions. In plants with low salt supply (LS) Cd induced severe toxicity. The presence of 200mM NaCl (HS) significantly alleviated Cd toxicity symptoms. HS drastically reduced both Cd-induced H 2 O 2 production and membrane damage. In HS plants the reduced Cd uptake was only in part responsible for the lower Cd toxicity. Even at equal internal leaf Cd concentrations less Cd toxicity was observed in HS than in LS plants. In HS plants proportionally more Cd was bound in cell walls and proportionally less accumulated in the soluble fraction than in LS plants. Our results show that NaCl improves plant performance under Cd stress by both a decrease of Cd 2+ activity in the medium leading to less Cd uptake and a change of Cd speciation and compartmentation inside tissues. More efficient internal detoxification seems mainly brought about by preferential Cd binding to chloride and cell walls in plants treated with a high salt concentration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)243-250
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Cadmium tolerance
  • Cd speciation
  • Chloride
  • Salinity
  • Sesuvium portulacastrum
  • Subcellular distribution


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