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Comparing A Review of Heavy Metal Uptake and Their Toxicity on Plant and Human Health

Author(s): Mario Soliman, Shobha Potlakayala, Daniele Millar, Hannah Weeden, Daniel Bogush, Michihito Deguchi, Sairam Rudrabhatla

Heavy metal contamination in soil has become increasingly problematic in many regions around the world where anthropogenic pressures are high and is the leading cause for lost agricultural yield. A plant’s requirement of basic micronutrients for growth and development is relatively small, however natural soils contain non-essential – often toxic – elements. Despite a plant’s root cell selective membrane, much of the undesired elements found in natural soils can be detected in plant tissues. Some of the most common toxic elements to plants include Cadmium (Cd), Arsenic (As), Lead (Pb) and Mercury (Hg). Although plants do require essential micronutrients for development such as Copper (Cu), Nickel (Ni), and Zinc (Zn), excessive amounts can still be toxic for plants. Heavy metal contamination in natural soils has adverse effects on plants and even more serious effects on humans. As such, phytoremediation of contaminated soils has become increasingly important and calls for a better understanding of plant heavy metal uptake and detoxification mechanisms. In this review, we provide a concise overview plant metal uptake transporters and detoxification mechanisms. In this review, we provide a concise overview of plant metal uptake transporters and detoxification mechanisms.

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