Physical and chemical indices of cucumber seedling leaves under dibutyl phthalate stress

Ying Zhang, Na Du, Lei Wang, Hui Zhang, Jiaying Zhao, Guoqiang Sun, Pengjie Wang
Environmental Science and Pollution Research International 2015, 22 (5): 3477-88
Phthalic acid ester (PAE) pollution to soil can lead to phytotoxicity in plants and potential health risks to human being. Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) as a kind of PAE has a large usage amount and large residues in soil. To analyze antioxidant responses of plants to DBP stress, effects of varying DBP concentrations on cucumber seedlings growth had been investigated. Malonaldehyde (MDA), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), chlorophyll, proline, glutathione (GSH), and oxidized glutathione (GSSH) contents and activities of antioxidant enzymes including superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), ascorbate peroxidase (APX), and peroxidase (POD) were studied. The results showed that H2O2 content increased in cucumber seedlings with the increase of DBP concentration. The chlorophyll content in the higher DBP significantly declined compared to the control. In the present study, a disturbance of the GSH redox balance was evidenced by a marked decrease in GSH/GSSG ratio in cucumber seedlings subjected DBP stress. Our results indicated that DBP treatment not only inhibited antioxidant capacity and antioxidant enzyme activity in seedlings' leaves but might also induce chlorophyll degradation or reduce the synthesis of chlorophyll. Moreover, it could also enhance the accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) which induced membrane lipid peroxidation. DBP also altered the ultrastructure of mesophyll cells, damaged membrane structure of chloroplast and mitochondrion, and increased the number and size of starch grains in chloroplasts reducing the photosynthetic capacity.

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