Does subcellular distribution in plants dictate the trophic bioavailability of cadmium to Porcellio dilatatus (Crustacea, Isopoda)?

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Journal Article
Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, 2008, 27 (12), pp. 2548 - 2556
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The present study examined how subcellular partitioning of Cd in plants with different strategies to store and detoxify Cd may affect trophic transfer of Cd to the isopod Porcellio dilatatus. The plant species used were Lactuca sativa, a horticultural metal accumulator species; Thlaspi caerulescens, a herbaceous hyperaccumulator species; and the nonaccumulator, T. arvense. Taking into account that differences in subcellular distribution of Cd in plants might have an important role in the bioavailability of Cd to a consumer, a differential centrifugation technique was adopted to separate plant leaf tissues into four different fractions: cell debris, organelles, heat-denatured proteins, and heat-stable proteins (metallothionein-like proteins). Plants were grown in replicate hydroponic systems and were exposed for 7 d to 100 μM Cd spiked with 109Cd. After a 14-d feeding trial, net assimilation of Cd in isopods following consumption of T. caerulescens and T. arvense leaves reached 16.0 ± 2.33 and 21.9 ± 1.94 μg/g animal, respectively. Cadmium assimilation efficiencies were significantly lower in isopods fed T. caerulescens (10.0 ± 0.92%) than in those fed T. arvense (15.0 ± 1.03%). In further experiments, Cd assimilation efficiencies were determined among isopods provided with purified subcellular fractions of the three plants. On the basis of our results, Cd bound to heat-stable proteins was the least bioavailable to isopods (14.4-19.6%), while Cd bound to heat-denatured proteins was the most trophically available to isopods (34.4-52.8%). Assimilation efficiencies were comparable in isopods fed purified subcellular fractions from different plants, further indicating the importance of subcellular Cd distribution in the assimilation. These results point to the ecological relevance of the subcellular Cd distribution in plants, which directly influence the trophic transfer of Cd to the animal consumer. © 2008 SETAC.
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