American Chemical Society
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Incorporation of Selenium Derived from Nanoparticles into Plant Proteins in Vivo

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-08-02, 13:38 authored by Yue Wang, Li-Juan Feng, Xiao-Dong Sun, Meiyi Zhang, Jian-Lu Duan, Fu Xiao, Yue Lin, Fan-Ping Zhu, Xiang-Pei Kong, Zhaojun Ding, Xian-Zheng Yuan
Diets comprising selenium-deficient crops have been linked to immune disorders and cardiomyopathy. Selenium nanoparticles (SeNPs) have emerged as a promising nanoplatform for selenium-biofortified agriculture. However, SeNPs fail to reach field-scale applications due to a poor understanding of the fundamental principles of its behavior. Here, we describe the transport, transformation, and bioavailability of SeNPs through a combination of in vivo and in vitro experiments. We show synthesized amorphous SeNPs, when sprayed onto the leaves of Arabidopsis thaliana, are rapidly biotransformed into selenium(IV), nonspecifically incorporated as selenomethionine (SeMet), and specifically incorporated into two selenium-binding proteins (SBPs). The SBPs identified were linked to stress and reactive oxygen species (mainly H2O2 and O2) reduction, processes that enhance plant growth and primary root elongation. Selenium is transported both upwards and downwards in the plant when SeNPs are sprayed onto the leaves. With the application of Silwet L-77 (a common agrochemical surfactant), selenium distributed throughout the whole plant including the roots, where pristine SeNPs cannot reach. Our results demonstrate that foliar application of SeNPs promotes plant growth without causing nanomaterial accumulation, offering an efficient way to obtain selenium-fortified agriculture.