Biologia Plantarum

, Volume 61, Issue 1, pp 187–191 | Cite as

Silicon modifies both a local response and a systemic response to mechanical stress in tobacco leaves

  • R. Hajiboland
  • S. Bahrami-Rad
  • C. Poschenrieder
Brief Communication


Both lignin and silicon (Si) are major players in the resistance of plants to mechanical stress (MS). Focusing on the phenolic metabolism, here we studied the short-term effects of a local MS on tobacco (Nicotiana rustica L. cv. Basmas) plants with Si (+Si, 1 mM Na2SiO3) and without Si (‒Si) treatments in order to see how Si may modify local and systemic responses. One week after starting the Si treatment, a half of the plants were exposed to a mechanical pressure applying 980 Pa for 24 h on the upper side of the 3rd leaf of each plant (+MS). The rest of the plants remained unstressed (‒MS). Plants were harvested 24 h and 72 h after starting the MS and the leaves directly exposed to the mechanical stress (DMS) and those indirectly exposed to the mechanical stress (IMS) from below and above the DMS leaf were analyzed for phenolic metabolism along with the corresponding leaves from‒MS plants. In the DMS leaf, the activities of polyphenol oxidase, phenylalanine ammonia lyase, and cytosolic and covalently-bound peroxidases increased by the MS, while decreased by Si. In accordance with this in the DMS leaf, the content of soluble and cell wall-bound phenolics and lignin were enhanced by the MS but decreased by Si. Interestingly, Si influenced the pattern of response to the MS depending on whether the leaves were directly treated by the MS or not. Silicon treatment augmented MS-induced lignin accumulation in the DMS leaf while rather inhibited lignin formation in the IMS leaves. These data show that Si modified MS-mediated changes in the phenolic metabolism differently in local and systemic leaves.

Additional key words

cell wall-bound phenolics lignin Nicotiana rustica peroxidase phenylalanine ammonia lyase polyphenol oxidase 



cell wall


direct mechanical stress


indirect mechanical stress


mechanical stress


phenylalanine ammonia lyase






Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Cabot, C., Gallego, B., Martos, S., Barceló, J., Poschenrieder, C.: Signal cross talk in Arabidopsis exposed to cadmium, silicon, and Botrytis cinerea. - Planta 237: 337–349, 2013.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Chérif, M., Asselin, A., Bélanger, R.R.: Defense responses induced by soluble silicon in cucumber roots infected by Phytium spp. - Phytopathology 84: 236–242, 1994.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Currie, H.A., Perry, C.C.: Silica in plants: biological, biochemical and chemical studies. - Ann. Bot. 100: 1383–1389, 2007.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  4. Detmann, K.C., Araújo, W.L., Martins, S.C.V., Fernie, A.R., Fábio, M., Da Matta, F.M.: Metabolic alterations triggered by silicon nutrition. Is there a signaling role for silicon? - Plant Signal. Behav. 8: 71–74, 2013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Dixon, R.A., Paiva, N.L.: Stress-induced phenylpropanoid metabolism. - Plant Cell 7: 1085–1097, 1995.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  6. Elliott, C.L., Snyder, G.H.: Autoclave-induced digestion for the colorimetric determination of silicon in rice straw. - J. Agr. Food Chem. 1091: 1118–1119, 1991.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Fauteux, F., Chain, F., Belzile, F., Menzies, J.G., Bélanger, R.R.: The protective role of silicon in the Arabidopsispowdery mildew pathosystem. - Proc. nat. Acad. Sci. USA 103: 17554–17559, 2006.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  8. Guntzer, F., Keller, C., Meunier, J.D.: Benefits of plant silicon for crops: a review. - Agron. Sustain. Dev. 32: 201–213, 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Hajiboland, R., Bastani, S., Bahrami-Rad, S., Poschenrieder, C.: Interactions between aluminum and boron in tea (Camellia sinensis) plants. - Acta Physiol. Plant. 37: 54, 2015.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Hajiboland, R.: Effect of micronutrient deficiencies on plant stress responses. - In: Ahmad, P., Prasad, M.N.V. (ed.): Abiotic Stress Responses in Plants. Pp. 283–329. Springer, New York 2012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Kusumoto, D.: Concentrations of lignin and wall-bound ferulic acid after wounding in the phloem of Chamaecyparis obtusa. - Trees Struct. Funct. 19: 451–456, 2005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Lukaszuk, E., Ciereszko, I.: Plant responses to wounding stress. - In: Laska, G. (ed.): Biological Diversity - from Cell to Ecosystem. Pp. 73–85. Polish Botanical Society, Bialystok 2012.Google Scholar
  13. Moura, JC., Bonine, C.A., De Oliveira Fernandes, V.J., Dornelas, M.C., Mazzafera, P.: Abiotic and biotic stresses and changes in the lignin content and composition in plants. - Integr. Plant Biol. 52: 360–376, 2010.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Raven, J.A.: The transport and function of silicon in plants. - Biol. Rev. Camb. Philos. Soc. 58: 179–207, 1983.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Shetty, R., Fretté, X., Jensen, B., Shetty, N.P., Jensen, J.D., Jørgensen, H.J.L., Newman, M.A., Christensen, L.P.: Silicon-induced changes in antifungal phenolic acids, flavonoids, and key phenylpropanoid pathway genes during the interaction between miniature roses and the biotrophic pathogen Podosphaera pannosa. - Plant Physiol. 157: 2194–2220, 2011.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  16. Soltani, B.M., Ehlting, J., Hamberger, B., Douglas, C.J.: Multiplecis-regulatory elements regulate distinct and complex patterns of developmental and wound-induced expression of Arabidopsis thaliana 4CL gene family members. - Planta 224: 1226–1238, 2006.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Van Bockhaven, J., De Vleesschauwer, D., HÖfte, M.: Towards establishing broad-spectrum disease resistance in plants: silicon leads the way. - J. exp. Bot. 64: 1281–1293, 2012.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Wang, B., Wang, J., Zhao, H., Zhao, H.: Stress induced plant resistance and enzyme activity varying in cucumber. - Colloids Surf. B: Biointerfaces 48: 138–142, 2006.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Weaver, L.M., Herrmann, K.M.: Dynamics of the shikimate pathway in plants. - Trends Plant Sci. 2: 346–351, 1997.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Hajiboland
    • 1
    • 2
  • S. Bahrami-Rad
    • 2
  • C. Poschenrieder
    • 3
  1. 1.Center of Excellence for BiodiversityUniversity of TabrizTabrizIran
  2. 2.Plant Science DepartmentUniversity of TabrizTabrizIran
  3. 3.Plant Physiology Laboratory, Bioscience FacultyUniversidad Autónoma de BarcelonaBellaterraSpain

Personalised recommendations