, Volume 248, Issue 3, pp 647–659 | Cite as

Effect of exogenous abscisic acid on morphology, growth and nutrient uptake of rice (Oryza sativa) roots under simulated acid rain stress

  • Hongyue Liu
  • Xiaoqian Ren
  • Jiuzheng Zhu
  • Xi Wu
  • Chanjuan LiangEmail author
Original Article


Main conclusion

Application of proper ABA can improve acid tolerance of rice roots by balancing endogenous hormones and promoting nutrient uptake.


Abscisic acid (ABA) has an important signaling role in enhancing plant tolerance to environmental stress. To alleviate the inhibition on plant growth and productivity caused by acid rain, it is crucial to clarify the regulating mechanism of ABA on adaptation of plants to acid rain. Here, we studied the effects of exogenously applied ABA on nutrients uptake of rice roots under simulated acid rain (SAR) stress from physiological, biochemical and molecular aspects. Compared to the single SAR treatment (pH 4.5 or 3.5), exogenous 10 μM ABA alleviated the SAR-induced inhibition of root growth by balancing endogenous hormones (abscisic acid, indole-3-acetic acid, gibberellic acid and zeatin), promoting nutrient uptake (nitrate, P, K and Mg) in rice roots, and increasing the activity of the plasma membrane H+-ATPase by up-regulating expression levels of genes (OSA2, OSA4, OSA9 and OSA10). However, exogenous 100 μM ABA exacerbated the SAR-caused inhibition of root growth by disrupting the balance of endogenous hormones, and inhibiting nutrient uptake (nitrate, P, K, Ca and Mg) through decreasing the activity of the plasma membrane H+-ATPase. These results indicate that proper concentration of exogenous ABA could enhance tolerance of rice roots to SAR stress by promoting nutrients uptake and balancing endogenous hormones.


Acid rain Endogenous hormone Exogenous ABA H+-ATPase Nutrient uptake Rice roots 



Gibberellic acid


Indole-3-acetic acid


Simulated acid rain





The authors are grateful for the financial support from the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (No. BK20161131), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31000245, 31370517) and Postgraduate Research and Practice Innovation Program of Jiangsu Province (KYCX17_1485).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interests.

Supplementary material

425_2018_2922_MOESM1_ESM.docx (16 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 17 kb)
425_2018_2922_MOESM2_ESM.tif (536 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (TIFF 537 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hongyue Liu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiaoqian Ren
    • 2
  • Jiuzheng Zhu
    • 2
  • Xi Wu
    • 2
  • Chanjuan Liang
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Food Science and TechnologyJiangnan UniversityWuxiChina
  2. 2.Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Anaerobic Biotechnology, School of Environmental and Civil EngineeringJiangnan UniversityWuxiChina
  3. 3.Jiangsu Cooperative Innovation Center of Technology and Material of Water TreatmentJiangnan UniversityWuxiChina

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