Radial oxygen loss has different effects on the accumulation of total mercury and methylmercury in rice

Xun Wang, Bing Li, Nora Fung Yee Tam, Lu Huang, Xiaoli Qi, Hongbin Wang, Zhihong Ye, Mei Meng, Jianbo Shi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Background and Aims: Mercury (Hg) pollution in paddy fields and rice has aroused great concern in recent years. This study investigated the dynamic changes of radial oxygen loss (ROL) and Fe plaque formation on roots, and their effects on Hg accumulation in rice plants.

Methods: A rhizobag experiment was conducted to study temporal variations and correlations between ROL (amounts and rates), Fe plaque formation, total Hg (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) in plant tissues and in plaque of four rice cultivars during six growth stages.

Conclusions: ROL has great effects on THg but not MeHg accumulation in rice plants. Rice cultivars with higher ROLs tend to have a greater ability to reduce THg accumulation in brown rice.

Results: ROL amounts and Fe plaque formation increased from tillering to reproductive stages, then ROL amounts gradually decreased until maturation stage, whereas Fe plaque remained relatively stable. ROL rates continued to decline during the entire growth period. Both ROL amounts and Fe concentrations in plaque were positively correlated with THg concentrations in the plaque, whereas negatively correlated with THg in straw and brown rice. However, there were no significant relationships between ROL, Fe in plaque and MeHg in plaque and in plant tissues.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-355
Number of pages13
JournalPlant and Soil
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 19 Nov 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Dynamic changes
  • Iron plaque
  • Mercury
  • Methylmercury
  • Oryza sativa L
  • Radial oxygen loss (ROL)


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