Hydrogen sulphide alleviates iron deficiency by promoting iron availability and plant hormone levels in Glycine max seedlings

Juan Chen*, Ni Na Zhang, Qing Pan, Xue Yuan Lin, Zhouping Shangguan, Jian Hua Zhang, Ge Hong Wei*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Hydrogen sulphide (H2S) is involved in regulating physiological processes in plants. We investigated how H2S ameliorates iron (Fe) deficiency in soybean (Glycine max L.) seedlings. Multidisciplinary approaches including physiological, biochemical and molecular, and transcriptome methods were used to investigate the H2S role in regulating Fe availability in soybean seedlings. 

Results: Our results showed that H2S completely prevented leaf interveinal chlorosis and caused an increase in soybean seedling biomass under Fe deficiency conditions. Moreover, H2S decreased the amount of root-bound apoplastic Fe and increased the Fe content in leaves and roots by regulating the ferric-chelate reductase (FCR) activities and Fe homeostasis- and sulphur metabolism-related gene expression levels, thereby promoting photosynthesis in soybean seedlings. In addition, H2S changed the plant hormone concentrations by modulating plant hormone-related gene expression abundances in soybean seedlings grown in Fe-deficient solution. Furthermore, organic acid biosynthesis and related genes expression also played a vital role in modulating the H2S-mediated alleviation of Fe deficiency in soybean seedlings. 

Conclusion: Our results indicated that Fe deficiency was alleviated by H2S through enhancement of Fe acquisition and assimilation, thereby regulating plant hormones and organic acid synthesis in plants.

Original languageEnglish
Article number383
JournalBMC Plant Biology
Issue number1
Early online date20 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Plant Science

User-Defined Keywords

  • Hydrogen sulphide (H2S)
  • Iron assimilation
  • Iron deficiency
  • Organic acid
  • Plant hormones
  • Soybean (Glycine max)


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