Cadmium stress in paddy fields: Effects of soil conditions and remediation strategies

Babar Hussain, Muhammad Nadeem Ashraf, Shafeeq-ur-Rahman, Aqleem Abbas, Jumei Li, Muhammad Farooq*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

145 Citations (Scopus)


Cadmium (Cd) toxicity in paddy soil and accumulation in rice plants and grains have got global concern due to its health effects. This review highlights the effects of soil factors including soil organic matter, soil pH, redox potential, and soil microbes which influencing Cd uptake by rice plant. Therefore, a comprehensive review of innovative and environmentally friendly management practices for managing Cd stress in rice is lacking. Thus, this review discusses the effect of Cd toxicity in rice and describes management strategies to offset its effects. Moreover, future research thrusts to reduce its uptake by rice has also been highlighted. Through phytoremediation, Cd may be extracted and stabilized in the soil while through microbes Cd can be sequestrated inside the microbial bodies. Increased Cd uptake in hyperaccumulator plants to remediate and convert the toxic form of Cd into non-toxic forms. While in chemical remediation, Cd can be washed out, immobilized and stabilized in the soil through chemical amendments. The organic amendments may help through an increase in soil pH, adsorption in its functional groups, the formation of complexations, and the conversion of exchangeable to residual forms. Developing rice genotypes with restricted Cd uptake and reduced accumulation in grain through conventional and marker-assisted breeding are fundamental keys for safe rice production. In this regard, the use of molecular techniques including identification of QTLs, CRISPR/Cas9, and functional genomics may be quite helpful.

Original languageEnglish
Article number142188
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2021


  • Amendments
  • Breeding
  • Cadmium contamination
  • Paddy soil
  • Phytoremediation
  • Phytotoxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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