Al-induced efflux of organic acid anions is poorly associated with internal organic acid metabolism in triticale roots

Julie E. Hayes, Jian Feng Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Citations (Scopus)


The secretion of organic acid anions from roots has been identified as a mechanism of resistance to Al. However, the process leading to the secretion of organic acid anions is poorly understood. The effect of Al on organic acid metabolism was investigated in two lines of triticale (x Triticosecale Wittmark) differing in Al-induced secretion of malate and citrate and in Al resistance. The site of Al-induced secretion of citrate and malate from a resistant line was localized to the root apices (terminal 5 mm). The levels of citrate (root apices and mature root segments) and malate (mature segments only) in roots increased during exposure to Al, but similar changes were observed in both triticale genotypes. The in vitro activities of four enzymes involved in malate and citrate metabolism (citrate synthase, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase, malate dehydrogenase, and NADP-isocitrate dehydrogenase) were similar for sensitive and resistant lines in both root apices and mature root segments. The response of these enzymes to pH did not differ between tolerant and sensitive lines or in the presence and absence of Al. Moreover, cytoplasmic and vacuolar pH were not affected by exposure to Al in either line. Together, these results indicate that the Al-dependent efflux of organic acid anions from the roots of triticale is not regulated by their internal levels in the roots or by the capacity of the root cells to synthesize malate and citrate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1753-1759
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of experimental botany
Issue number388
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Aluminium resistance
  • Citrate
  • Malate
  • Organic acid anion efflux
  • Organic acid metabolism
  • Triticale

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Plant Science


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