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Print version ISSN 1405-2768


GUERRERO-ZUNIGA, L. Angélica  and  RODRIGUEZ-DORANTES, Angélica Ma.. The effect of phenanthrene on protein expression and radical enzymatic activity in Cyperus hermaphroditus. Polibotánica [online]. 2009, n.27, pp.103-130. ISSN 1405-2768.

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) are part of the petroleum contaminants encountered in the environment. It has been shown that soils supporting vegetation are effective in removing and mineralizing these contaminants; because plant roots have phytoremediation-related proteins like enzymatic systems linked to the plant cell wall that contribute to the remediation of contaminated sites. Through their direct action or by union they sequester, transform and transport organic contaminants. The aim of this work was to analyze changes in the expression of the soluble and the ionically-bound cell wall root proteins and the activity of certain enzymes considered as biochemical markers in plants of Cyperus hermaphroditus exposed to phenanthrene, a tricyclic aromatic hydrocarbon. The effect of phenanthrene on the activity of the root enzymes guaiacol peroxidases, ascorbate peroxidases, laccases and acid phosphatases showed significant differences between the enzymes of the soluble protein fraction and the contaminant concentration. However, the enzymes of the ionically-bound cell wall fraction showed significant differences only among themselves, not with respect to the concentration of contaminant. The results showed that the amount of activity of constitutive enzymes and the induction or repression of protein expression in plants of C. hermaphroditus exposed to phenanthrene can be important mechanisms of plant reactions to contaminant toxicity or in partially transforming them to less toxic products that can be easily absorbed by the roots and sequestered in the plants.

Keywords : Cyperus; phenanthrene; proteins.

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