Tolerance to cadmium in the germination and development of jack beans

  • Sarita Cordeiro Rossi
  • Ana Maria Magalhães Andrade Lagoa
  • Marlene Aparecida Schiavinato



 Cadmium (Cd) is a metal that contaminates the environment mainly through agroindustrial, metallurgical and chemical industrial activities. It can affect mineral absorption by plants, the stomatal aperture, photosynthesis and water balance by reducing the crop yield. Aiming at the discovery of new species able to tolerate Cd, this study evaluated the germination and development of jackbean plants in the presence of Cd to determine whether there is tolerance to this metal. Seeds and seedlings of this species were grown in plastic pots containing sand with Cd concentrations of 0, 500 and 2000 μmol L–1 applied as CdCl2.2.5H2O. The experiments were conducted in a greenhouse under natural photoperiod conditions. Percent germination was close to 100% 13 days after sowing. Seedlings accumulated much of the applied Cd in the shoot and produced high biomass. No alterations to the photosynthetic apparatus were observed at the lower concentrations. This indicates that jack bean plants exhibit characteristics of tolerance to Cd and that further studies should be performed to report if this species can be used as phytoremediator.


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