Sheila Macfie, PhD
Mechanisms of Metal Tolerance
Many plants have a remarkable ability to withstand high concentrations of potentially toxic metals in their environment. A better understanding of the biochemical and physiological mechanisms that permit such tolerance may provide valuable information regarding the use of plants to restore contaminated areas.
Current projects involve edible plants, including wheat (Triticum spp) barley (Hordeum vulgare) and lettuce (Lactuca sativa), as well as Arabidopsis thaliana. The approaches that we are taking include: (1) investigate the production and exudation of organic compounds as a mechanism to detoxify metal ions, (2) determine the localization of metal ions at the subcellular level, (3) model the movement of metals from the soil into the plant and (4) identify the relationship between metal toxicity and a number of biochemical pathways that mediate plant stress.
Degrees and Institutions
- Ph.D. University of Alberta
- M.Sc. Queen’s University
- B.Sc. Queen’s University
- Biology 4920f - Seminar in Biology
- Biology 9600 - Physiology & Biochemistry I
- Biology 9913 - Written Communications in Biology
- Akhter, M.F., McGarvey, B.and Macfie, S.M. 2012. Reduced translocation of Cd from roots is associated with increased production of phytochelatins and their precursors. Journal of Plant Physiology. DOI 10.1016/j.jplph.2012.07.011. Availble on-line 22 Aug 2012.
- Akhter, M.F., and Macfie, S.M. 2012. Species-specific relationship between transpiration and cadmium translocation in lettuce, barley and radish. Journal of Plant Studies 1:2-13. DOI 10.5539/jps.v1n1p2.
- Quinn, C.J., Mohammad, A. and Macfie, S.M. 2011. Accumulation of cadmium in near-isogenic lines of durum wheat (Triticum turgidum var durum): the role of transpiration. Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants 17:317-325, DOI 10.1007/s12298-011-0086-2
- Murray, H., Pinchin T. and Macfie, S.M. 2011. Compost application affects metal uptake in plants grown in urban garden soils and potential human health risk. Journal of Soils and Sediments 11:815-829. DOI 10.1007/s11368-011-0359-y.
- Adeniji, B.A., Budimir-Hussey, MT and Macfie, S.M. 2010. Low molecular weight organic acids are partly responsible for the differential Cd accumulation in isolines of durum wheat (Triticum turgidum L. var durum). Acta Physiologia Plantarum32:1063-1072.