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Stress-induced cytological and chemical adaptations in Cupressus plants from an urban area of Palermo (Italy)

  • Authors: MELATI CHIAPPARA, M.; Alaimo, M.; Orecchio, S.; DE VITA, F.
  • Publication year: 2004
  • Type: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
  • OA Link:


We studied stress-induced cytological and chemical adaptations in Cupressus pollens and needles from the area of Palermo (Sicily, Italy), in polluted and control sites (unpolluted) of urban and suburban areas. Pollen and needle chemical composition were investigated to provide an indicator of contamination of the trees, which were also examined structurally throughout one year. The concentration of particulate with lead was found to be significantly higher in plants at the polluted traffic site. Lead is one of the worst particulate pollutants in cities, especially in the winter season. In trees from the polluted site, all structural analysis revealed displasies. Structural changes, observed in trees from polluted sites, are most likely caused by the toxic effects of various pollutants, for example particulate, because fine particulate, with metals, is on the rise at present. We studied the effects on the pollen with an optical microscope, a scanning electron microscope (SEM) and cytochemical staining of esterases and acid phosphatase.