Effect of nickel chloride on Arabidopsis genomic DNA and methylation of 18S rDNA
Background In recent years, nickel (Ni) has been widely applied in industrial and agricultural production and has become a kind of environmental pollution. In this study, the effect of nickel chloride (NiCl2) with different concentrations on Arabidopsis genomic stability and DNA methylation has been demonstrated. The nucleolus variation and 18S rDNA methylation after NiCl2 treatment have been analyzed. Results The results are as follows: (1) The NiCl2 could result in heritable genomic methylation variations. The genomic DNA methylation variations have been detected by methylation-sensitive amplified polymorphism (MSAP) molecular markers, and the result showed that after NiCl2 treatment, there was methylation variation in T0 generation seedlings, and partial site changes maintained in T1 generation, which suggested that the effects of NiCl2 on DNA methylation could be heritable in offspring. (2) NiCl2 brought deformity and damage to nucleolar structure in Arabidopsis root tip cells, and the damage was positively correlated with the NiCl2 concentration. 3. In the nucleolus, there was an increased cytosine methylation in 18S rDNA. The plant nucleolus variation and 18S rDNA methylation may be used as an examination indicator for Ni pollution in soil or plant. Conclusions NiCl2 application caused variation of DNA methylation of the Arabidopsis genomic and offspring's. NiCl2 also resulted in nucleolar injury and deformity of root tip cells. The methylation rate of 18S rDNA also changed by adding NiCl2.