An engineered plant that accumulates higher levels of heavy metals than Thlaspi caerulescens, with yields of 100 times more biomass in mine soils.Chemosphere. 2006 Jun; 64(3):478-85.C
Nicotiana glauca transformed with TaPCS1 was tested for its application in phytoremediation. When plantlets were grown in mine soils containing Cu, Zn, and Pb (42, 2600, and 1500 mg kg(-1)) the plant showed high levels of accumulation especially of Zn and Pb. Adult plants growing in mine soils containing different heavy metal concentrations showed a greater accumulation as well as an extension to a wider range of elements, including Cd, Ni and B. The overexpressed gene confers up to 9 and 36 times more Cd and Pb accumulation in the shoots under hydroponic conditions, and a 3- and 6-fold increase in mining soils. When the hyperaccumulator Thlaspi caerulescens was compared, the results were higher values of heavy metal and Boron accumulation, with a yield of 100 times more biomass. Thlaspi was unable to survive in mining soils containing either a level higher than 11000 mg kg(-1) of Pb and 4500 mg kg(-1) of Zn, while engineered plants yielded an average of 0.5 kg per plant.