Malate Efflux From Root Apices and Tolerance to Aluminium Are Highly Correlated in Wheat
Australian Journal of Plant Physiology
22(4) 531 - 536
Aluminium (Al) can stimulate the efflux of malate and other organic acids from root apices of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) seedlings. This response has been implicated in a mechanism of Al tolerance since the amount of malate released from an Al-tolerant genotype was 5-10-fold greater than the amount released from a near-isogenic, but Al sensitive, genotype. In the present study, 36 wheat cultivars were screened for Al tolerance and for the amount of malate released from their root apices with a standard A1 treatment. Excised root apices (3.0 mm) were used to measure malate efflux, and the relative tolerance to Al was determined from root growth measurements in 3 and 10μM AlCl3 with 200 μM CaCl2, pH 4.3. There was a significant correlation between relative tolerance of the genotypes to Al and the amount of malate released from their root apices. Growth measurements were also used to investigate the amelioration of Al toxicity by exogenous malate. In the presence of 3 μM Al alone, relative root growth of an Al-sensitive genotype was reduced to 13% of the control. Addition of 10 μM malate to the solution increased relative root growth to 50%, and 20 µM malate completely alleviated the Al-induced inhibition of root growth. The results support the hypothesis that the Al-stimulated efflux of malate from root apices is involved in a general mechanism for Al tolerance in wheat.
Keywords: Triticum aestivum, aluminium, tolerance, toxicity, malate, root apex
© CSIRO 1995