Silicon-induced antioxidant defense and methylglyoxal detoxification works coordinately in alleviating nickel toxicity in Oryza sativa L.

  • Mirza HasanuzzamanEmail author
  • Md. Mahabub Alam
  • Kamrun Nahar
  • Sayed Mohammad Mohsin
  • M. H. M. Borhannuddin Bhuyan
  • Khursheda Parvin
  • Barbara Hawrylak-Nowak
  • Masayuki FujitaEmail author


Nickel (Ni), an essential nutrient of plant but very toxic to plant at supra-optimal concentration that causes inhibition of seed germination emergence and growth of plants as a consequence of physiological disorders. Hence, the present study investigates the possible mechanisms of Ni tolerance in rice seedlings by exogenous application of silicon (Si). Thirteen-day-old hydroponically grown rice (Oryza sativa L. cv. BRRI dhan54) were treated with Ni (NiSO4.7H2O, 0.25 and 0.5 mM) sole or in combination with 0.50 mM Na2SiO3 for a period of 3 days to investigate the effect of Si supply for revoking the Ni stress. Nickel toxicity gave rise to reactive oxygen species (ROS) and cytotoxic methylglyoxal (MG), accordingly, initiated oxidative stress in rice leaves, and accelerated peroxidation of lipids and consequent damage to membranes. Reduced growth, biomass accumulation, chlorophyll (chl) content, and water balance under Ni-stress were also found. However, free proline (Pro) content increased in Ni-exposed plants. In contrast, the Ni-stressed seedlings fed with supplemental Si reclaimed the seedlings from chlorosis, water retrenchment, growth inhibition, and oxidative stress. Silicon up-regulated most of the antioxidant defense components as well as glyoxalase systems, which helped to improve ROS scavenging and MG detoxification. Hence, these results suggest that the exogenous Si application can improve rice seedlings’ tolerance to Ni-toxicity.


Abiotic stress Heavy metals toxicity Methylglyoxal Trace element Reactive oxygen species 



The authors acknowledge Mr. Abdul Awal Chowdhury Masud, Department of Agronomy, Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University, Dhaka, Bangladesh for critical reading and editing of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mirza Hasanuzzaman
    • 1
    Email author
  • Md. Mahabub Alam
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kamrun Nahar
    • 3
  • Sayed Mohammad Mohsin
    • 4
    • 5
  • M. H. M. Borhannuddin Bhuyan
    • 4
    • 6
  • Khursheda Parvin
    • 4
    • 7
  • Barbara Hawrylak-Nowak
    • 8
  • Masayuki Fujita
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Agronomy, Faculty of AgricultureSher-e-Bangla Agricultural UniversityDhakaBangladesh
  2. 2.Department of Agriculture, Faculty of ScienceNoakhali Science and Technology UniversityNoakhaliBangladesh
  3. 3.Department of Agricultural Botany, Faculty of AgricultureSher-e-Bangla Agricultural UniversityDhakaBangladesh
  4. 4.Laboratory of Plant Stress Responses, Department of Applied Biological Sciences, Faculty of AgricultureKagawa UniversityKagawaJapan
  5. 5.Department of Plant Pathology, Faculty of AgricultureSher-e-Bangla Agricultural UniversityDhakaBangladesh
  6. 6.Citrus Research StationBangladesh Agricultural Research InstituteSylhetBangladesh
  7. 7.Department of Horticulture, Faculty of AgricultureSher-e-Bangla Agricultural UniversityDhakaBangladesh
  8. 8.Department of Plant PhysiologyUniversity of Life Sciences in LublinLublinPoland

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