Turkish Journal of Botany




In the present study, the protective effect of nitric oxide (NO) against Cd-induced structural disturbances in pea (Pisum sativum) leaves was investigated. Cadmium treatment resulted in a decreased leaf size and thickness of the lamina, reduced intercellular spaces in the mesophyll, small pavement cells, and a high density of stomata. These abnormalities were partially or fully reversed by a simultaneous application of Cd and the NO donor, sodium nitroprusside (SNP). The concentration of 1000 µM SNP was very effective in counteracting the adverse effects of Cd and resulted in leaf structural parameters close to those of the control leaves. These findings suggest that exogenous NO can effectively facilitate structural adjustments in pea leaves under Cd stress, which could improve stress tolerance at the whole-plant level.


Cadmium, leaves, guard cells, nitric oxide, pavement cells, Pisum sativum

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