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Journal of Botany
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 369572, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/369572
Review Article

Phytotoxicity by Lead as Heavy Metal Focus on Oxidative Stress

1Biology Department, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
2MAP-BioPlant, Biology Department, Faculty of Science, University of Porto, 4169-007 Porto, Portugal

Received 14 February 2012; Accepted 13 April 2012

Academic Editor: Conceição Santos

Copyright © 2012 Sónia Pinho and Bruno Ladeiro. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

In the recent years, search for better quality of life in urban areas has been provoking an increase in urban agriculture. However, this new way of agriculture can bring risks to human health since this land is highly contaminated, due to anthropogenic activities. This way, lead (Pb) phytotoxicity approach must be taken into consideration since it can be prejudicial to human health through food chain. Pb is a common environmental contaminant, which originate numerous disturbances in plant physiological processes due to the bioacummulation of this metal pollutant in plant tissues. This review, focus on the uptake and interaction of lead by plants and how it can be introduced in food chain. Special attention was taken to address the oxidative stress by lead regarding the effects produced in plant physiological and biochemical processes. Furthermore, the antioxidant defence system was taken into consideration. Phytoremediation is applied on site or chronic polluted soils. This emerging technique is useful to bioaccumulate, degrade or decrease risks associated with contaminants in soils, water or air through the use of hyperaccumulaters. In addition, the impact of nanoparticles in plant science was also focused in this article since some improving properties in plants have been increasingly investigated.