Special Issue "Plant Responses to Environmental Pollution"

A special issue of Plants (ISSN 2223-7747). This special issue belongs to the section "Plant Response to Abiotic Stress and Climate Change".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2021).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Giedrė Kacienė
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Vytautas Magnus University, Universiteto st. 10 –609b, LT-46265 Kaunas, Lithuania
Interests: weed crop competition; ozone; heavy metals; plant adaptation; oxidative stress; climate change effects on plants

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Environmental pollution has various negative effects on plants. The huge variety of pollutants, the rapidly growing number of new synthesized chemicals, leads to a wide range of plant reactions, manifesting in almost all levels of the organization of life. Airborne, soil, and water pollutants enter plants mostly via leaves, roots, or the whole surface, respectively. They can cause rapid and direct effects, such as oxidative burst, while prolonged exposure to pollutants interferes with plant metabolism (i.e., photosynthetic activity, nutrient uptake, and circulation), which leads to impaired growth, reduced harvest, economic losses, and disturbed ecosystem functions and services.

The aim of this Special Issue “Plant Responses to Environmental Pollution” in Plants is to induce and maintain the discussion within the scientific community of plant ecologists and physiologists about new, relevant, and undiscovered manifestations of pollution effects on plants. The Special Issue will cover a broad scope of topics, including but not limiting to: direct and indirect effects of pollution on plants, the complex interplay between pollutants and their effects on plants, plants’ adaptation strategies and potential to recover, mitigation of pollution effects, use of plants for bioremediation, etc. A wide range of target species are welcome: crops, forage plants, water and wetland plants, herbs, endangered species, etc. Relevant scientific original research papers and reviews can be focused on different organization levels of life, starting from organelles to the whole ecosystem.

Dr. Giedrė Kacienė
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Article
Influence of Land Use on the C and N Status of a C4 Invasive Grass in a Semi-Arid Region: Implications for Biomonitoring
Plants 2021, 10(5), 942; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10050942 - 09 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 630
Abstract
Biomonitoring of atmospheric pollution is an increasingly accepted practice. However, most existing biomonitors are usually epiphytic species from mesic environments. This work assessed the suitability of buffelgrass (Cenchrus ciliaris), an invasive C4 grass in northwestern Mexico, as a biomonitor, by [...] Read more.
Biomonitoring of atmospheric pollution is an increasingly accepted practice. However, most existing biomonitors are usually epiphytic species from mesic environments. This work assessed the suitability of buffelgrass (Cenchrus ciliaris), an invasive C4 grass in northwestern Mexico, as a biomonitor, by means of the spatial distribution of the carbon and nitrogen content and isotopic signatures for grass samples collected from urban, agricultural, and natural areas throughout the state of Sonora. We found the highest tissue carbon content of 45.6% (on a dry weight basis) and highest nitrogen content of 3.31% for buffelgrass from the Yaqui Valley. We also found the lowest δ13C of −15.9‰, and the highest δ15N of 16.7‰ in the same region. In contrast, the lowest carbon and nitrogen content of 39.4 and 1.49% were found for Bahía de Kino and Río Sonora mountains, respectively. The lowest δ15N of 2.18‰ and the highest δ13C of −13.7‰ were measured for two remote locations. These results show the influence that pollutant emissions, including agriculture and transportation, have on elemental and isotopic composition of vegetation. Buffelgrass is most adequate for tracking carbon and nitrogen emissions in arid environments and for determining alterations on nitrogen soil reactions, as a first approximation for saturation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Responses to Environmental Pollution)
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Article
Phytodepuration of Nitrate Contaminated Water Using Four Different Tree Species
Plants 2021, 10(3), 515; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10030515 - 10 Mar 2021
Viewed by 574
Abstract
Water pollution by excessive amounts of nitrate (NO3) has become a global issue. Technologies to clean up nitrate-contaminated water bodies include phytoremediation. In this context, this research aimed to evaluate four tree species (Salix alba L., Populus alba L., [...] Read more.
Water pollution by excessive amounts of nitrate (NO3) has become a global issue. Technologies to clean up nitrate-contaminated water bodies include phytoremediation. In this context, this research aimed to evaluate four tree species (Salix alba L., Populus alba L., Corylus avellana L. and Sambucus nigra L.) to remediate nitrate-contaminated waters (100 and 300 mg L−1). Some physiological parameters showed that S. alba L. and P. alba L. increased particularly photosynthetic activity, chlorophyll content, dry weight, and transpired water, following the treatments with the above NO3 concentrations. Furthermore, these species were more efficient than the others studied in the phytodepuration of water contaminated by the two NO3 levels. In particular, within 15 days of treatment, S. alba L. and P. alba L. removed nitrate quantities ranging from 39 to 78%. Differently, C. avellana L. and S. nigra L. did not show particular responses regarding the physiological traits studied. Nonetheless, these species removed up to 30% of nitrate from water. In conclusion, these data provide exciting indications on the chance of using S. alba L. and P. alba L. to populate buffer strips to avoid NO3 environmental dispersion in agricultural areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Responses to Environmental Pollution)
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Article
Effect of Crude Oil on Growth, Oxidative Stress and Response of Antioxidative System of Two Rye (Secale cereale L.) Varieties
Plants 2021, 10(1), 157; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10010157 - 14 Jan 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 757
Abstract
Rye (Secale cereale L.) is one of the most important cereal crops in Eastern and Northern Europe, showing better tolerance to environmental stress factors compared to wheat and triticale. Plant response to the crude oil-polluted soil depends on plant species, oil concentration, [...] Read more.
Rye (Secale cereale L.) is one of the most important cereal crops in Eastern and Northern Europe, showing better tolerance to environmental stress factors compared to wheat and triticale. Plant response to the crude oil-polluted soil depends on plant species, oil concentration, time of exposure, etc. The current study is aimed at investigating the growth, oxidative stress and the response of antioxidative system of two rye varieties (Krona and Valdai) cultivated on crude oil-contaminated soils at different concentrations (1.5, 3.0, 6.0, and 12.0%). Inhibition of rye growth was observed at crude oil concentrations of above 3% for above-ground plant parts and of above 1.5% for roots. A decrease in content of chlorophyll a and total chlorophylls in Krona variety was detected at 1.5% oil concentration in soil and in Valdai variety at 3% oil concentration. Compared with the control, the content of malondialdehyde was significantly increased in the Krona variety at 3% oil concentration and in Valdai variety at 6% oil concentration. The crude oil-induced oxidative stress was minimized in rye plants by the enhanced contents of low-molecular antioxidants (proline, non-protein thiols, ascorbic acid, phenolic compounds) and activities of superoxide dismutase, catalase, ascorbate peroxidase, and glutathione peroxidase. The strongest positive correlation was detected between the content of malondialdehyde and contents of proline (r = 0.89–0.95, p ≤ 0.05) and phenolic compounds (r = 0.90–0.94, p ≤ 0.05) as well as superoxide dismutase activity (r = 0.81–0.90, p ≤ 0.05). Based on the results of a comprehensive analysis of growth and biochemical parameters and of the cluster analysis, Valdai variety proved to be more resistant to oil pollution. Due to this, Valdai variety is considered to be a promising rye variety for cultivation on moderately oil-polluted soils in order to decontaminate them. At the same time, it is necessary to conduct further studies aimed at investigating oil transformation processes in the soil-rye system, which would make it possible to determine the efficiency of using this cereal for soil remediation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Responses to Environmental Pollution)
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