DMSP: Occurrence in Plants and Response to Salinity in Zea mays

Ties Ausma, Marko Kebert, Jacqueline Stefels, Luit J. De Kok

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


Dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) is a secondary sulfur compound that is present in high levels in several marine algal species and some higher plant species. DMSP has also been detected in low levels in some other plant species, though its overall occurrence within the plant kingdom remains unclear. The physiological function of DMSP in saline algae and plants is largely unsolved. It is presumed that the compound can function as a constitutive osmolyte and/or antioxidant. In the current study the occurrence of DMSP within the plant kingdom was analyzed. DMSP was present in nanomolar concentrations in all investigated plant species, indicating that it appears to occur widespread within the plant kingdom. Maize (Zea mays) appeared also to be a low-DMSP containing species. Shoot DMSP content in this crop increased upon exposure to salinity, also in the presence of atmospheric H2S and anoxia. This showed that the DMSP content in maize responded in a similar pattern to salinity exposure which has been observed in DMSP-accumulating plants.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSulfur Metabolism in Higher Plants
Subtitle of host publicationFundamental, Environmental and Agricultural Aspects
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-56526-2
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-56525-5
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jun 2017
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

SeriesProceedings of the International Plant Sulfur Workshop


  • salt marsh
  • plant kingdom
  • Hoagland nutrient solution
  • high plant species
  • fresh plant material


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