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Copper, nutrient and toxin in plants

Kamminga, Sanne (2018) Copper, nutrient and toxin in plants. Bachelor's Thesis, Biology.


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Copper is a heavy metal playing a role in several processes. Till 1930 there was no evidence of its importance to plants. After this, it had become an official essential element to plants. Although the concentration needed of copper is very small, it is present in various enzymes and acts out multiple different roles of action. What happens when there is too much or too little of the metal? All plants react differently to a deficiency of copper. But there are some overall effects. Copper toxicity is becoming a real problem in areas where there is copper pollution. Due to excessive fertilization or use of fungicides, a buildup of copper is occurring in the agricultural soil. This leads in some cases to food crops with more copper in their systems, but still the concentration of copper in the plants is not correlated with the concentration in the soil. Toxicity can lead to a decrease in biomass production and photosynthetic capacity. To get rid of excessive amount of copper we can use phytoremediation.

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor's Thesis)
Supervisor name: Kok, L.J. de
Degree programme: Biology
Thesis type: Bachelor's Thesis
Language: English
Date Deposited: 16 Aug 2018
Last Modified: 16 Aug 2018 10:53

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