Metal accumulation, growth and nutrition of Vernonia polyanthes exposed to lead nitrate and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi




Bioaccumulation Factor, Phytoextraction, Phytostabilization, Potential Toxic Element, Translocation Factor.


The association between plants and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) can be used to bioremediate areas contaminated by metals. The objectives of this work were to evaluate the lead (Pb2+) phytoaccumulation capacity, morpho-physiology and nutrition responses of Vernonia polyanthes exposed to a solution amended with concentrations of lead nitrate and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. The treatments consisted of increasing doses of Pb2+ as lead nitrate [Pb(NO3)2], two strains of AMF and an absolute control without lead and AMF. Lead negatively affected some morphophysiological variables, reduced 27.3, 25.63, 30.60, and 56.60% shoot length, root collar diameter, number of leaves and leaf area, respectively, besides reducing decreasing chlorophyll a. Lead accumulated in the shoot and roots, the latter at the highest concentrations. However, the translocation factor was above 1, indicating low efficiency. The bioaccumulation factor referring to the roots were above 1. The fungi colonization rate was low, 3.31% for Gigaspora margarita and 2.33% for Acaulospora morrowiae. However, the absorption of lead increased, reflecting in lower values of chlorophyll a, dry mass of root and diameter. Results indicated that the arboreal species V. polyanthes tolerate high concentrations of lead and can accumulate significant amounts in the roots. AMF increase the accumulation of lead in the shoot and can be used in projects aimed at the phytoextraction of metals.


Download data is not yet available.


AHMED, A. and TAJMIR-RIAHI, H.A. Interaction of toxic metal ions Cd2+, Hg2+ and Pb with light-harvesting proteins of chloroplast thylakoid membranes. An FTIR spectroscopic study. Journal Inorganic Biochemistry. 1993, 50, 235-243.

ALABOUDI, K.A., et al. Phytoremediation of Pb and Cd contaminated soils by using sunflower (Helianthus annuus) plant. Annals of Agricultural Sciences. 2018, 63(1), 123-127.

ALVES, J.C., et al. Absorção e distribuição de chumbo em plantas de vetiver, jureminha e algaroba. Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo. 2008, 32(3), 1329-1336.

ALVES, J.C., et al. Potential of sunflower, castor bean, common buckwheat and vetiver as lead phytoaccumulators. Revista Brasileira de Engenharia Agrícola e Ambiental. 2016, 20(3), 243-249.

ARIAS, M.S.B., et al. Enhanced Pb absorption by Hordeum vulgare L. and Helianthus annuus L. plants inoculated with an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi consortium. International Journal of Phytoremediation. 2015, 17(5), 405-413.

ARNON, D.I. Copper enzymes in isolated chloroplasts: polyphenoloxydase in Beta vulgaris. Plant Physiology. 1949, 24(1), 1-15.

BALIGAR, V.C., et al. Toxicology and nutrient constraints on root growth. Hortscience. 1998, 33(6), 960-965.

BATISTA, A.A., et al. Induced changes in the growth of four plant species due to lead toxicity. Revista Brasileira de Engenharia Agrícola e Ambiental. 2017, 21(5), 327-332.

BOECHAT, C.L., et al. Heavy metals and nutrients uptake by medicinal plants cultivated on multi-metal contaminated soil samples from an abandoned gold ore-processing site. Water, Air and Soil Pollution. 2016a, 24, 3063-3073.

BOECHAT, C.L., et al. Accumulation and translocation of heavy metal by spontaneous plants growing on multi-metal-contaminated site in the Southeast of Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. 2016b, 23(3), 2371-2380.

BURZYNSKI, M. The influence of lead and cadmium on the absorption and distribution of potassium, calcium, magnesium and iron in cucumber seedlings. Acta Physiologiae Plantarum. 1987, 9, 229-238.

CANNATA, M.G., et al. Effects of lead on the content, accumulation, and translocation of nutrients in bean plant cultivated in nutritive solution. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis. 2013, 44(5), 939-951.

CHANDRASEKHAR, C. and RAY, J.G. Lead accumulation, growth responses and biochemical changes of three plant species exposed to soil amended with different concentrations of lead nitrate. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety. 2019, 171, 26-36.

CHEN, L., et al. The effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi on sex-specific responses to Pb pollution in Populus cathayana. Ecotoxicology Environmental Safety. 2015, 113, 460-468.

CLARK, R.B. and ZETO, S.K. Mineral acquisition by arbuscular mycorrhizal plants. Journal of Plant Nutrition. 2000, 23, 867–902

CONINX, L., et al., 2017. Mycorrhiza-assisted phytoremediation. In: A. Cuypers, J. Vangronsveld (Eds.), Advances in Botanical Research, v. 83, London: Academic Press, p.127-188.

FERREIRA, D.F. Sisvar: a computer statistical analysis system. Ciência e Agrotecnologia. 2011, 35, 1039-1042.

FERROL, N., et al. The heavy metal paradox in arbuscular mycorrhizas: from mechanisms to biotechnological applications. Journal of Experimental Botany. 2016, 67(22), 6253-6265.

GARG, N. and CHANDEL, S. Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Networks: Process and Functions. Agronomy for Sustainable Development. 2010, 30, 581-599.

GIOVANNETTI, M. and MOSSE, B. Anevaluation of techniques formeasuring vesicular arbuscular mycorrhizal infection in roots. New Phytologist. 1980, 84(3), 489–500.

HISCOX, J.D. and ISRAELSTAM, G.F. A method for the extraction of chlorophyll from leaf tissue without maceration. Canadian Journal of Botany. 1979, 57(12),1332-1334.

HOAGLAND, D.R. and ARNON, D.I. The Water-cultured method for growing plants without soil. California Agricultural Experiment Station Circular. 1950, 347, 1-32.

HUA, J., et al. Effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi inoculation on arsenic accumulation by tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.). Journal of Environmental Sciences. 2009, 21(9), 1214-1220.

INMET - Instituto Nacional de Meteorologia. Banco de Dados Meteorológicos para Ensino e Pesquisa. 2018. Access in march 20 2019. Available from http//

JIANG, W. and LIU, D. Pb-induced cellular defense system in the root meristematic cells of Allium sativum L. BMC Plant Biology. 2010, 10, 40.

KABATA-PENDIAS, A. Trace elements in soils and plants. 4.ed. Boca Raton: CRC Press/Taylor & Francis Group, 2011.

KODRE, A., et al. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi alter Hg root uptake and ligand environment as studied by X-ray absorption fine structure. Environmental and Experimental Botany. 2017, 133, 12-23.

KOPITTKE, P.M., et al. Toxic effects of Pb2+ on growth of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata). Environment Pollution. 2007, 150(2), 280-287.

KOSKE, R.E. and GEMMA, J.N. A modified procedure for to detect VA mycorrhizas. Mycological Research. 1989, 92(4), 486-488.

KUMAR, B., et al. Plant mediated detoxification of mercury and lead. Arabian Journal of Chemistry. 2017, 10(2), 2335-2342.

LAJAYER, B.A., et al. Heavy metals in contaminated environment: Destiny of secondary metabolite biosynthesis, oxidative status and phytoextraction in medicinal plants. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety. 2017, 145, 377-390.

MA, L.Q., et al. A fern that hyperaccumulates arsenic. Nature. 2001, 409, 579.

MA, Y., et al. Potential of plant beneficial bacteria and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in phytoremediation of metal-contaminated saline soils. Journal of Hazardous Materials. 2019, 379(5), 120813.

MACKAY, D. Correlation of bioconcentration factors. Environmental Science & Technology. 1982, 16(5), 274-278.

MARSCHNER, H. Mineral nutrition of higher plants. 2nd ed. London: Academic Press, 1995.

MEYER, E., et al. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in the growth and extraction of trace elements by Chrysopogon zizanioides (vetiver) in a substrate containing coal mine wastes. International Journal of Phytoremediation. 2017, 19(2), 113-120.

MNASRI, M., et al. Comparison of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal effects on the heavy metal uptake of a host and a non-host plant species in contact with extraradical mycelial network. Chemosphere. 2017, 171, 476-484.

MORAES, C.L., et al. Alterações fisiológicas e ultraestruturais de plântulas de tomate induzidas por chumbo. Iheringia Série Botânica. 2014, 69(2), 313-322.

PEREIRA, K.L., et al. Potencial fitorremediador das plantas predominantes na área do lixão de Inconfidentes/MG. Revista Agrogeoambiental. 2013, 1, 25-29.

REHMAN, M.Z.U., et al. Remediation of heavy metal contaminated soils by using Solanum nigrum: a review. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety. 2017, 143, 236-248.

ROONGTANAKIAT, N. and SANOH, S. Phytoextraction of zinc, cadmium and lead from contaminated soil by vetiver grass. Kasetsart Journal, Natural Science. 2011, 45(4), 603-612.

ROSSATO, L.V., et al. Effects of lead on the growth, lead accumulation and physiological responses of Pluchea sagittalis. Ecotoxicology. 2012, 21(1), 111-123.

SHARMA, P. and DUBEY, R.S. Lead toxicity in plants. Brazilian Journal of Plant Physiology. 2005, 17(1), 35-52.

SMITH, S.E. and SMITH, F.A. Fresh perspectives on the roles of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in plant nutrition and growth. Mycologia. 2012, 104(1), 1-13.

TEDESCO, M.J., et al. Análise de solo, plantas e outros materiais. 2.ed. Porto Alegre: UFRGS, 1995.

VERGARA, C., et al. Plant-mycorrhizal fungi interaction and response to inoculation with different growth-promoting fungi. Pesquisa Agropecuária Brasileira. 2019, 54, e25140.

XU, H., et al. Chlorophyll b can serve as the major pigment in functional photosystem II complexes of cyanobacteria. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. 2001, 98(24), 4168-14173.

YANG, Y., et al. The roles of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) in phytoremediation and tree-herb interactions in Pb contaminated soil. Scientific Reports. 2016, 6, 20469.

YANG, Y., et al. The combined effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and lead (Pb) stress on pb accumulation, plant growth parameters, photosynthesis, and antioxidant enzymes in Robinia pseudoacacia L. PLoS One. 2015, 10(12), e0145726, 1-24.

YONGPISANPHOP, J., et al. Phytoremediation Potential of Plants Growing on the Pb-Contaminated Soil at the Song Tho Pb Mine, Thailand. Soil and Sediment Contamination. 2017, 26, 426-437.

YONGSHENG, W., et al. Effect of Pb on the growth, accumulation and quality component of the tea plant. Procedia Engineering. 2011, 18, 214-219.

WU, W., et al. Assessment of heavy metal pollution and human health risks in urban soils around an electronics manufacturing facility. Science of the Total Environment. 2018, 630, 53-61.

ZHANG, Y., et al.Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi alleviate the heavy metal toxicity on sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) plants cultivated on a heavily contaminated field soil at a WEEE-recycling site. Science of The Total Environment. 2018, 628, 282-290.




How to Cite

MORAIS, J.., BOECHAT, C.L.., DE OLIVEIRA, D.F.., ARAUCO, A.M. de S.., CARLOS, F.S.. and SOARES, P.P. de S.., 2021. Metal accumulation, growth and nutrition of Vernonia polyanthes exposed to lead nitrate and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Bioscience Journal [online], vol. 37, pp. e37045. [Accessed14 August 2022]. DOI 10.14393/BJ-v37n0a2021-53697. Available from:



Agricultural Sciences