Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Extracellular production of reactive oxygen species in response to abiotic stress in seeds

By T. Roach


Reactive oxygen species (ROS), such as superoxide (O2 •‾), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), singlet oxygen (1O2) and the hydroxyl radical (•OH) can damage essential biomolecules including nucleic acids, proteins and lipids, causing damage to various cellular components. However, ROS also participate in signalling networks that are essential in plant stress responses, and also in the regulation of growth and development. Given the apparent importance of ROS, it is surprising that very little of their beneficial aspects have been researched in seeds and seedlings. Using desiccation sensitive ("recalcitrant") seeds of sweet chestnut (Castanea sativa Mill.) and desiccation tolerant ("orthodox") seeds of garden pea (Pisum sativum L.), the production of ROS was investigated during germination and seedling development, and in response to abiotic stress. Putative extracellular ROS-producing enzymes in both species were characterised to elucidate mechanisms of ROS production. Desiccating C. sativa seeds led to viability loss while the intracellular antioxidant glutathione became increasingly oxidised. Wounding and desiccation induced extracellular ROS production in C. sativa embryonic axes and P. sativum seedling axes. A pivotal role for extracellular peroxidases in producing O2 •‾ as a stress response became evident in both species as well as for the development of P. sativum seedlings. Wounding also induced amine oxidases in P. sativum embryonic axes to produce a burst of H2O2 that was essential for O2 •‾ production. Lipoxygenases were identified as putative O2 •‾- producing enzymes that may contribute to stress signalling in response to wounding. Treating desiccation-stressed material with H2O2 improved seed germination, seedling vigour and the establishment of secondary root growth. In conclusion, cell wall peroxidases, amine oxidases and lipoxygenases may work in synergy to produce O2 •‾required for stress signalling. Such extracellular ROS produced by seeds appear to be important signalling components involved in wound and desiccation response, regeneration and growth

Topics: Reactive oxygen species, superoxide, pisum sativum, castanea sativa, abiotic stress, desiccation, wounding
Publisher: UCL (University College London)
Year: 2009
OAI identifier:
Provided by: UCL Discovery

Suggested articles


  1. (1997). 37: 877 888 Wojtaszek P.
  2. (2006). A comparative study of water distribution, free radical production and activation of antioxidative metabolism in germinating pea seeds.
  3. (2000). A peanut seed lipoxygenase responsive to Aspergillus colonization. Plant Molecular Biology 42: 689 –
  4. (2004). Active oxygen species and antioxidants in seed biology.
  5. (2008). An oxidative burst of superoxide in embryos of recalcitrant sweet chestnut seeds as induced by excision and desiccation.
  6. (2001). Analysis of the distribution of copper amine oxidase in cell walls of legume seedlings. Planta 214: 37 – 45 Le Deunff
  7. (1975). Breaking of seed dormancy by catalase inhibition.
  8. (1994). Current Opinion in Plant Biology 7: 323 328 Lamb C.J.
  9. (2000). Early H2O2 accumulation in mesophyll cells leads to induction of glutathione during the hypersensitive response in the barley powdery mildew interaction.
  10. (1999). Elevated glutathione biosynthetic capacity in the chloroplasts of transgenic tobacco plants paradoxically causes increased oxidative stress.
  11. (2006). Enzymatic and non enzymatic protective mechanisms in recalcitrant seeds of Araucaria bidwillii subjected to desiccation. Plant Physiol Biochem 44: 556 563 Fry S.C.
  12. (2004). Extraction and Identification of Water Soluble and Lightly Ionically Bound Proteins.
  13. (2000). Fatty acid ketodienes and fatty acid ketotrienes: Michael addition acceptors that accumulate in wounded and diseased Arabidopsis leaves.
  14. (2006). Flavin containing polyamine oxidase is a hydrogen peroxide source in the oxidative response to the protein phosphatase inhibitor cantharidin in Zea mays L.
  15. (1988). Homoglutathione: isolation, quantificantion and occurrence in legumes.
  16. (1980). Improved equations for the prediction of seed longevity.
  17. (2009). In Vivo Cell Wall Loosening by Hydroxyl Radicals during Cress Seed Germination and Elongation Growth. Plant Physiology 150: 1855 – 1865
  18. (2000). Interaction between the lipoamide containing H protein and the lipoamide dehydrogenase (L protein) of the glycine decarboxylase multienzyme system 2. Crystal structures of H and L proteins.
  19. (1978). Lignin synthesis: the generation of hydrogen peroxide and superoxide by horseradish peroxidase and its stimulation by manganese(II) and phenols. Planta 140: 81 88 Halliwell B.
  20. (2005). Localization and activity of lipoxygenase in Cd treated seedlings of Phaseolus coccineus. Acta Societatis Botanicorum Poloniae 74: 199
  21. (1998). Mechanism of horseradish peroxidase catalysed epinephrine oxidation obligatory role of endogenous O2 •‾ and H2O2.
  22. (1996). NADPH oxidase of neutrophils.
  23. (2004). Performing the paradoxical: how plant peroxidases modify the cell wall. Trends Plant Science 9: 534 540
  24. (1979). Physiological significance of the oxidation reactions. Phytochemistry Reviews 3: 207 – 219 Takeshige
  25. (1998). Plant Hormone Signaling, Annual Plant Reviews.
  26. (2006). Polyamine Oxidase Is One of the Key Elements for Oxidative Burst to Induce Programmed Cell Death in Tobacco Cultured Cells.
  27. (1973). Predicting the storage life of seeds.
  28. (1980). Production of reactive oxygen intermediates (O2 • , H2O2, and •OH) by maize roots and their role in wall loosening and elongation growth.
  29. (1994). Purification and characterization of two distinct NAD(P)H dehydrogenases from Onion (Allium cepa) root plasma membrane. Plant Physiology 106: 87
  30. (2009). Redox regulation in photosynthetic organisms: signaling, acclimation and practical implications. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling 11:
  31. (1994). Relationship between ascorbate regeneration and the stimulation of root growth in Allium cepa L. Plant Science 100: 23
  32. (1994). Research 2: 17 – 22 Finch Savage W.E, Hendry G.A.F,
  33. (2004). Research 27: 283 – 289 Takahama U.
  34. (1998). Response to seed dormancy breaking treatment in rice species (Oryza L.). Seed Science and Technology 26: 675 689
  35. (2002). Root development.
  36. (2006). Seed dormancy and the control of germination. New Phytologist 171: 501 – 523
  37. (2001). Seed lipoxygenases: Occurrence and functions.
  38. (2007). Specific Aquaporins Facilitate the Diffusion of Hydrogen Peroxide across Membranes.
  39. (1976). Staining for lipoxygenase activity in electrophoretic gels.
  40. (2008). Superoxide dismutase, lipid peroxidation, and bell shaped dose Response curves. Dose Response 6: 223
  41. (2002). The apoplastic oxidative burst in response to biotic stress in plants: a three component system.
  42. (1996). The elicitor induced oxidative burst in cultured chickpea cells drives the rapid insolubilization of two cell wall structural proteins.
  43. (2003). The involvement of hydrogen peroxide and antioxidant enzymes in the process of shoot organogenesis of strawberry callus. Plant Science 165: 701 –
  44. (2009). The mechanisms involved in seed dormancy alleviation by hydrogen cyanide unravel the role of reactive oxygen species as key factors of cellular signaling during germination. Plant Physiology 150: 494 505 Orozco Cardenas
  45. (1999). The redox domain of the yAP 1 transcription factor contains two disulfide bonds.
  46. (2006). The role of reactive oxygen species in hormonal responses. Plant Physiology 141: 323 329 Laemmli U.K.
  47. (1972). The univalent reduction of oxygen by reduced flavins and quinones.
  48. (2006). Variable desiccation tolerance in Acer pseudoplatanus seeds in relation to developmental conditions: a case of phenotypic recalcitrance?
  49. (2004). Vitamin E Is Essential for Seed Longevity and for Preventing Lipid Peroxidation during Germination.
  50. (2004). Zinnia elegans uses the same peroxidase isoenzyme complement for cell wall lignification in both single cell tracheary elements and xylem vessels.

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.