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Original Research


Amel A. Tammam, Maysa M. Hatata, Ola A. Sadek.

The effect of interaction of 50 and 100 然 concentrations of Cd, a non-essential element and 50, 100, 150, and 200 然 concentrations of Zn; an essential micronutrient on growth, physiological, biochemical and molecular processes in Vicia faba L. were studied to evaluate the possible protective role of Zn against Cd toxicity. Treatment with 100 然 Zn and Cd alone caused significant increase in electrolyte leakage percent (ELP), lipid peroxidation and hydrogen peroxide content. Cadmium at 100 弮M concentration increased the activities of superoxide dismutase, catalase, peroxidase, ascorbate peroxidase but decreased those of glutathione reductase and glutathione S-transferase. On the other hand, under these conditions, thiol content enhanced oxidation of ascorbate (AsA) to dehydroascorbate (DHA) and glutathione (GSH) to glutathione disulfide (GSSG); a clear indication of oxidative stress. The 100 然 Cd treatments, reduced total phenolic content in the roots and shoots of the plant, but Zn application on the contrary enhanced the accumulation of phenolic compounds in the tested organs. In addition, 帢-tocopherol increased in the roots and shoots at 100 然 Cd and 100 然 Zn. Supplementation of zinc at (200 弮M) to Cd at (100 弮M) effectively restored thiols, inhibited oxidation of AsA and GSH thus maintained the redox molecules in reduced form. The effect of Cd at100弮M cause a slight induction of ascorbate peroxidase (APX, E.C. but inhibition of glutathione reductase (GR, E.C., enzymes of the ascorbateglutathione cycle (AGC). Zn supplementation not only restored but enhanced the functional activity of all the AGC enzymes (APX and GR). Zn application increased Glutathione-S- transferase (GST, E.C. activity. Treatments of Zn-alone did not change the above investigated parameters, but, total phenolic content and 帢-tocopherol increased in the roots and shoots at 100 然 Cd. These results clearly indicated a protective role of Zn in modulating the redox status of the plant system through the antioxidant pathway AGC, AsA and GSH enzymes to combating Cd induced oxidative stress.

Key words: Antioxidants, Cadmium, Zinc, Vicia faba

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