As bryophytes present the capacity to colonize a wide range of habitats, including extreme environments (e.g., mine areas), we first checked the global response of bryophytes to heavy metals (HM) by a systematic review. This analysis found i) the lack of studies in a polluted environment and ii) resulted in a global trend of photochemical efficiency decrease when bryophytes faced heavy metals. Secondly, we characterized the photoprotective responses of four metallicolous populations of mosses (Lewinskya rupestris, Polytrichum commune, Ptychostomum compactum and Rhynchostegium confertum) naturally growing in an abandoned mine area by an experimental field approach. As a result, we found markedly species-specific tolerance patterns: i) less tolerant species, presenting high pollutants content accompanied by marked dissipative and antioxidative strategies. This strategy was depicted by the species R. confertum that result to be a good sentinel species due to the high pollutant content and high physiological sensitivity.; ii) intermediate tolerant species presenting a medium content of pollutants and less marked photoprotective mechanisms, and iii) most tolerant species minimizing pollutants content and consequently presenting no changes in their physiological performance. This evidence support that species’ bryological attributes have a key role in determining species’ tolerance towards environmental heavy metals, and should be taken into consideration in future studies. The findings of this study also pointed out that the higher levels of γ + β-tocopherol in metallicolous populations could play a regulatory role in metal stress tolerance in mosses and it could be a suitable functional responsive trait for environmental response prediction to heavy metals in polluted environments.

Heavy metal tolerance strategies in metallicolous and non-metallicolous populations of mosses: Insights of γ+β-tocopherol regulatory role

Antonio De Agostini;Annalena Cogoni;Pierluigi Cortis;Andrea Vacca;
2022-01-01

Abstract

As bryophytes present the capacity to colonize a wide range of habitats, including extreme environments (e.g., mine areas), we first checked the global response of bryophytes to heavy metals (HM) by a systematic review. This analysis found i) the lack of studies in a polluted environment and ii) resulted in a global trend of photochemical efficiency decrease when bryophytes faced heavy metals. Secondly, we characterized the photoprotective responses of four metallicolous populations of mosses (Lewinskya rupestris, Polytrichum commune, Ptychostomum compactum and Rhynchostegium confertum) naturally growing in an abandoned mine area by an experimental field approach. As a result, we found markedly species-specific tolerance patterns: i) less tolerant species, presenting high pollutants content accompanied by marked dissipative and antioxidative strategies. This strategy was depicted by the species R. confertum that result to be a good sentinel species due to the high pollutant content and high physiological sensitivity.; ii) intermediate tolerant species presenting a medium content of pollutants and less marked photoprotective mechanisms, and iii) most tolerant species minimizing pollutants content and consequently presenting no changes in their physiological performance. This evidence support that species’ bryological attributes have a key role in determining species’ tolerance towards environmental heavy metals, and should be taken into consideration in future studies. The findings of this study also pointed out that the higher levels of γ + β-tocopherol in metallicolous populations could play a regulatory role in metal stress tolerance in mosses and it could be a suitable functional responsive trait for environmental response prediction to heavy metals in polluted environments.
2022
Bryological attributes; Mining soils; Bryophytes; Pigments; Tocopherols; Tolerance
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/323739
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