Sequestration of Mn into the cell wall contributes to Mn tolerance in sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum L.)

  • Shu Yang
  • Ke Yi
  • Min Min Chang
  • Gui Zhi Ling
  • Zun Kang Zhao
  • Xiao Feng LiEmail author
Regular Article



Sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum L.) grown on acid soils suffers serious chlorosis resulting from excess manganese (Mn). We explored the mechanisms underlying sugarcane tolerance to excess Mn.


Seedlings of genotypes YC96–66 (66) and YC58–21 (21) were cultured hydroponically with MnCl2, then Mn effects on leaf chlorophyll concentration, Mn subcellular distribution, cell wall polysaccharides were determined. A Mn adsorption kinetics assay was also conducted to examine the association of Mn-induced pectin modification with Mn-binding to cell walls.


Excess Mn caused significant dose- and time-dependent decrease in chlorophyll, with serious chlorosis in genotype 21 compared to 66. Genotype 66 absorbed more Mn and maintained higher leaf Mn, with greater proportions of Mn retained in cell walls. Up to 93.2% and 90.0% of cell wall-bound Mn was found in the pectin fraction in genotype 66 and 21, respectively. Mn induced pectin accumulation and pectin methylesterase activation, along with a decrease in the degree of pectin methylesterification, which thereby enhanced cell wall Mn-binding capacity in genotype 66. In contrast, no remarkable change was observed in genotype 21.


Mn-induced pectin accumulation, pectin demethylesterification and subsequent sequestration of Mn into the cell wall contribute to Mn tolerance in the sugarcane.


Cell wall Chlorosis Mn Mn-sequestration Pectin Sugarcane 



This study is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant No.31260497, 31660593), Guangxi Natural Science Foundation (grant No. 2016GXNSFDA380038) and the Innovation Project of Guangxi Graduate Education (YCBZ2017013, YCSW2018039).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shu Yang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ke Yi
    • 1
    • 2
  • Min Min Chang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Gui Zhi Ling
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
  • Zun Kang Zhao
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiao Feng Li
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory for Conservation and Utilization of Subtropical Agro-bioresources, College of AgricultureGuangxi UniversityNanningChina
  2. 2.Guangxi Key Laboratory for Sugarcane BiologyGuangxi UniversityNanningChina
  3. 3.Province and Ministry Cosponsored Collaborative Innovation Center of Sugar IndustryGuangxi UniversityNanningChina
  4. 4.National Demonstration Center of Experimental Plant Science EducationGuangxi UniversityNanningChina

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