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1.
Selenium affects mercury ligand environment in terrestrial food chain – a XAS study
Katarina Vogel Mikuš, Alojz Kodre, Iztok Arčon, Anja Kavčič, 2022, objavljeni povzetek znanstvenega prispevka na konferenci

Opis: Selenium (Se) supplied in inorganic form (as selenate or selenite) was shown to decrease mercury (Hg) toxicity by forming HgSe in soils as well as in animal and human tissues, while for plants there is no evidence of Hg-Se complexation. Although Se in not an essential element for plants it was shown to counteract various abiotic stresses when applied at trace amounts. The aim of this work was therefore to study physiological responses and Hg speciation in plant/ fungi-animal food chain. Lettuce (Lactuca sativa) and porcini mushrooms (Boletus edulis) were taken as model plant/ fungal species and Spanish slug (Arion vulgaris) as a model animal species. The plants, fed to the slugs, were grown in HgCl2 contaminated soil or soil from the vicinity of Hg mine in Idrija with traces of HgS and methyl Hg). Physiological parameters of plants and slugs were monitored during the experiment. At the end the biological material was frozen in LN2 and freeze dried. Hg L3-edge (12284 eV) XANES and EXAFS spectra of the biological samples and standards were measured at liquid helium temperature in fluorescence detection mode at the BM30B beamline of the ESRF synchrotron in Grenoble, using the 30-segment germanium solid state detector [1]. The results showed that addition of Se alleviated Hg toxic effects in the food chain started at HgCl2-contaminated soil, while for the soil from Idrija, containing low amounts of highly toxic methyl-Hg, the beneficial effect was less prominent [2]. No Hg-Se complexes were detected in plants, while in mushrooms and slugs the complexation was confirmed. Addition of Se to the plants, however, changed Hg ligand environment in plant tissues from sulphur to nitrogen ligands. Hg and Se both target the -SH functional groups in the plant tissues, so toxic effects of Hg are rather enhanced than alleviated by addition of Se. Nevertheless, the addition of Se to the plants is beneficial for higher trophic levels and lowers Hg toxicity for the primary consumers, the slugs.
Ključne besede: mercury, toxicity, ligand environment, XANES, EXAFS, food chain, plant, slug, fungi
Objavljeno v RUNG: 05.12.2022; Ogledov: 1690; Prenosov: 0
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2.
Nutritional quality and safety of the spirulina dietary supplements sold on the Slovenian market
Jasmina Masten, Marta Jagodic Hudobivnik, Marijan Nečemer, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, Iztok Arčon, Nives Ogrinc, 2022, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: The microalgae Spirulina may be a popular dietary supplement rich in essential nutrients and vitamins, but oversight of the supplement industry, in general, remains limited, and increasing incidents of adulteration, misbranding, and undeclared ingredients together with misleading claims create potential risks. In response, this study characterized the elemental, amino acid and fatty acid content of commercially available Spirulina supplements in Slovenia using EDXRF, ICP-MS and GC-MS and compared the results with their nutritional declaration. The gathered data confirm that Spirulina supplements are a good source of calcium (0.15 to 29.5% of RDA), phosphorous (3.36–26.7% of RDA), potassium (0.5 to 7.69% of RDA) and selenium (0.01 to 38.6% of RDA) when consumed within recommended amounts. However, although iron contents were relatively high (7.64 to 316% of RDA), the actual bioavailability of iron was much lower since it was mainly present as the ferric cation. This study also confirms that pure Spirulina supplements are a good source of essential and non-essential amino acids, and !-6 but not !-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. The presence of additives resulted in significant variation in nutrient content and, in some instances, lower product quality. Moreover, a high proportion (86.7%) of inappropriate declarations regarding the elemental content was observed. Overall, the study conclusions underline the need for a stricter control system for Spirulina-based supplements.
Ključne besede: Spirulina, microalgae, cyanobacteria, elements, toxic elements, amino acids, fatty acids, authenticity, safety, quality
Objavljeno v RUNG: 24.03.2022; Ogledov: 1862; Prenosov: 0
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3.
1,8-dihydroxy naphthalene (DHN) - melanin confers tolerance to cadmium in isolates of melanised dark septate endophytes
Mateja Potisek, Matevž Likar, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, Iztok Arčon, Jože Grdadolnik, Marjana Regvar, 2021, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: The contribution of 1,8-dihydroxy naphthalene (DHN) melanin to cadmium (Cd) tolerance in two dark septate endophytes (DSE) of the genus Cadophora with different melanin content was investigated in vitro. The DSE isolate Cad#148 with higher melanin content showed higher tolerance to Cd than the less melanised Cad#149. Melanin synthesis was significantly reduced by Cd in both isolates with uninhibited melanin synthesis, in a dosedependent manner. Inhibition of melanin synthesis by tricyclazole reduced the relative growth of Cad#148 exposed to Cd and did not affect Cad#149. Cd accumulation was not altered by tricyclazole in the two isolates, but it increased catalase and reduced glutathione reductase activity in more melanised Cad#148, indicating higher stress levels. In contrast, in Cad#149 the enzyme activity was less affected by tricyclazole, indicating a more pronounced role of melanin-independent Cd tolerance mechanisms. Cd ligand environment in fungal mycelia was analysed by extended EXAFS (X-ray absorption fine structure). It revealed that Cd was mainly bound to O- and S-ligands, including hydroxyl, carboxyl, phosphate and thiol groups. A similar proportion of S- and Oligands (~35% and ~65%) were found in both isolates with uninhibited melanin synthesis. Among O-ligands two types with Cd-O-C- and Cd-O-P- coordination were identified. Tricyclazole altered Cd-O- ligand environment in both fungal isolates by reducing the proportion of Cd-O-C- and increasing the proportion of Cd-O-P coordination. DHN-melanin, among other tolerance mechanisms, significantly contributes to Cd tolerance in more melanised DSE fungi by immobilising Cd to hydroxyl groups and maintaining the integrity of the fungal cell wall.
Ključne besede: DSE, melanin, Cd tolerance, inhibitor tricyclazole, antioxidant enzymes, EXAFS
Objavljeno v RUNG: 13.07.2021; Ogledov: 2343; Prenosov: 0
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4.
Laser ablation-single-particle-inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry as a multimodality bioimaging tool in nano-based omics
Dino Metarapi, Johannes Teun van Elteren, Martin Šala, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, Iztok Arčon, Vid Simon Šelih, Mitja Kolar, Samo B. Hočevar, 2021, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: Advanced data processing and visualization techniques were applied to laser ablation-single particleinductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-sp-ICPMS) data obtained from imaging of roots of sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) which were exposed to ionic silver (Ag+). Highly multiplexed images with tissue level resolution were generated, showing the uptake and transformation of Ag+ to silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in whole root cross-sections, and revealing that the size of biosynthesized AgNPs is predisposed by the reducing power of particular root compartments. Various Ag+ and AgNP visualization strategies are shown with special emphasis on spatially resolved information associated with the number and spherical-equivalent size of individual AgNPs in user-selected root cross-sectional regions, including statistical analysis of the AgNP distribution. Normally, this multimodality information can only be obtained by combining the results of techniques from several complementary platforms.
Ključne besede: Laser ablation, Ag XANES, bioimaging
Objavljeno v RUNG: 03.06.2021; Ogledov: 2430; Prenosov: 50
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5.
Temporal and spatial patterns of zinc and iron accumulation during barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) grain development. Journal of agricultural and food chemistry.
Amelie Detterbeck, Paula Pongrac, Daniel Persson, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, Mitja Kelemen, Primož Vaupetič, Primož Pelicon, Iztok Arčon, Søren Husted, Jan Kofod Shjoerring, Stephan Clemens, 2020, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: Breeding and engineering of biofortified crops will benefit from a better understanding of bottlenecks controlling micronutrient loading within the seeds. However, few studies have addressed the changes in micronutrient concentrations, localization, and speciation occurring over time. Therefore, we studied spatial patterns of zinc and iron accumulation during grain development in two barley lines with contrasting grain zinc concentrations. Microparticle-induced-X-ray emission and laser ablationinductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry were used to determine tissue-specific accumulation of zinc, iron, phosphorus, and sulfur. Differences in zinc accumulation between the lines were most evident in the endosperm and aleurone. A gradual decrease in zinc concentrations from the aleurone to the underlying endosperm was observed, while iron and phosphorus concentrations decreased sharply. Iron co-localized with phosphorus in the aleurone, whereas zinc co-localized with sulfur in the sub-aleurone. We hypothesize that differences in grain zinc are largely explained by the endosperm storage capacity. Engineering attempts should be targeted accordingly.
Ključne besede: barley (Hordeum vulgare L.), biofortification, grain development, grain loading, LA-ICP-MS, μ-PIXE
Objavljeno v RUNG: 20.10.2020; Ogledov: 3056; Prenosov: 0
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6.
Arabidopsis halleri shows hyperbioindicator behaviour for Pb and leaf Pb accumulation spatially separated from Zn
Stephan Höreth, Paula Pongrac, Marta Debeljak, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, Matic Pečovnik, Primož Vavpetič, Iztok Arčon, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: Lead (Pb) ranks among the most problematic environmental pollutants. Background contamination of soils is nearly ubiquitous, yet plant Pb accumulation is barely understood. In a survey covering 165 European populations of the metallophyte Arabidopsis halleri, several field samples had indicated Pb hyperaccumulation, offering a chance to dissect plant Pb accumulation. Accumulation of Pb was analysed in A. halleri individuals from contrasting habitats under controlled conditions to rule out aerial deposition as a source of apparent Pb accumulation. Several elemental imaging techniques were employed to study the spatial distribution and ligand environment of Pb. Regardless of genetic background, A. halleri individuals showed higher shoot Pb accumulation than A. thaliana. However, dose–response curves revealed indicator rather than hyperaccumulator behaviour. Xylem sap data and elemental imaging unequivocally demonstrated the in planta mobility of Pb. Highest Pb concentrations were found in epidermal and vascular tissues. Distribution of Pb was distinct from that of the hyperaccumulated metal zinc. Most Pb was bound by oxygen ligands in bidentate coordination. A. halleri accumulates Pb whenever soil conditions render Pb phytoavailable. Considerable Pb accumulation under such circumstances, even in leaves of A. thaliana, strongly suggests that Pb can enter food webs and may pose a food safety risk.
Ključne besede: Pb accumulation, XANES, EXAFS, Arabidopsis halleri
Objavljeno v RUNG: 16.01.2020; Ogledov: 3340; Prenosov: 0
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7.
Mineral element composition in grain of awned and awnletted wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cultivars tissue-specific iron speciation and phytate and non-phytate ligand ratio
Paula Pongrac, Iztok Arčon, Hiram Castillo Michel, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, 2020, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: In wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), the awns—the bristle-like structures extending from lemmas—are photosynthetically active. Compared to awned cultivars, awnletted cultivars produce more grains per unit area and per spike, resulting in significant reduction in grain size, but their mineral element composition remains unstudied. Nine awned and 11 awnletted cultivars were grown simultaneously in the field. With no difference in 1000-grain weight, a larger calcium and manganese—but smaller iron (Fe) concentrations—were found in whole grain of awned than in awnletted cultivars. Micro X-ray absorption near edge structure analysis of different tissues of frozen-hydrated grain cross-sections revealed that differences in total Fe concentration were not accompanied by differences in Fe speciation (64% of Fe existed as ferric and 36% as ferrous species) or Fe ligands (53% were phytate and 47% were non-phytate ligands). In contrast, there was a distinct tissue-specificity with pericarp containing the largest proportion (86%) of ferric species and nucellar projection (49%) the smallest. Phytate ligand was predominant in aleurone, scutellum and embryo (72%, 70%, and 56%, respectively), while nucellar projection and pericarp contained only non-phytate ligands. Assuming Fe bioavailability depends on Fe ligands, we conclude that Fe bioavailability from wheat grain is tissue specific.
Ključne besede: biofortification, phytate, iron, awn, X-ray fluorescence, X-ray absorption spectrometry, phosphorus, sulphur, nicotianamine
Objavljeno v RUNG: 16.01.2020; Ogledov: 3137; Prenosov: 0
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8.
Localization, ligand environment, bioavailability and toxicity of mercury in Boletus spp. and Scutiger pes-caprae mushrooms
Anja Kavčič, Klemen Mikuš, Marta Debeljak, Johannes Teun van Elteren, Iztok Arčon, Alojz Kodre, Peter Kump, Andreas-Germanos Karydas, Alessandro Migliori, Mateusz Czyzycki, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, 2019, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: This study provides information on mercury (Hg) localization, speciation and ligand environment in edible mushrooms: Boletus edulis, B. aereus and Scutiger pes-caprae collected at non-polluted and Hg polluted sites, by LA-ICP-MS, SR-μ-XRF and Hg L3-edge XANES and EXAFS. Mushrooms (especially young ones) collected at Hg polluted sites can contain more than 100 μg Hg g−1 of dry mass. Imaging of the element distribution shows that Hg accumulates mainly in the spore-forming part (hymenium) of the cap. Removal of hymenium before consumption can eliminate more than 50% of accumulated Hg. Mercury is mainly coordinated to di-thiols (43–82%), followed by di-selenols (13–35%) and tetra-thiols (12–20%). Mercury bioavailability, as determined by feeding the mushrooms to Spanish slugs (known metal bioindicators owing to accumulation of metals in their digestive gland), ranged from 4% (S. pes-caprae) to 30% (B. aereus), and decreased with increasing selenium (Se) levels in the mushrooms. Elevated Hg levels in mushrooms fed to the slugs induced toxic effects, but these effects were counteracted with increasing Se concentrations in the mushrooms, pointing to a protective role of Se against Hg toxicity through HgSe complexation. Nevertheless, consumption of the studied mushroom species from Hg polluted sites should be avoided.
Ključne besede: edible mushrooms, HgSe complex, imaging of elemental distribution, LA-ICP-MS, alpha-XRF, XAS
Objavljeno v RUNG: 24.10.2019; Ogledov: 4842; Prenosov: 0
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9.
10.
A Biogenerated Polymetallic Catalyst from Society's Wastes
Oreste Piccolo, Stefano Paganelli, Petro Zanatta, Sebastiano Tieuli, Laura Sperni, Franco Baldi, Iztok Arčon, Michele Gallo, Katarina Vogel-Mikuš, 2019, izvirni znanstveni članek

Opis: Aims:Preparation of the new metals - polymeric composite, Met x-EPS (I), to be used as a green catalyst in water or in two-phase aqueous conditions. Study Design: Recovery and valorization of polymetallic wastes to obtain directly new catalysts using a microorganism to explore their application in removal of difficult and dangerous chemical pollutants present in aqueous environment
Ključne besede: Metals - polymeric composite, biogenerated polymetallic exopolysaccharide, new catalyst from metallic wastes, hydrodechlorination of PCBs in water
Objavljeno v RUNG: 06.05.2019; Ogledov: 3656; Prenosov: 0
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