Hyperaccumulator Plants from China: A Synthesis of the Current State of Knowledge

Environ Sci Technol. 2018 Nov 6;52(21):11980-11994. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.8b01060. Epub 2018 Oct 22.


Hyperaccumulator plants are the material basis for phytoextraction research and for practical applications in decontaminating polluted soils and industrial wastes. China's high biodiversity and substantial mineral resources make it a global hotspot for hyperaccumulator plant species. Intensive screening efforts over the past 20 years by researchers working in China have led to the discovery of many different hyperaccumulators for a range of elements. In this review, we present the state of knowledge on all currently reported hyperaccumulator species from China, including Cardamine hupingshanensis (selenium, Se), Dicranopteris dichotoma (rare earth elements, REEs), Elsholtzia splendens (copper, Cu), Phytolacca americana (manganese, Mn), Pteris vittata (arsenic, As), Sedum alfredii, and Sedum plumbizincicola (cadmium/zinc, Cd/Zn). This review covers aspects of the ecophysiology and molecular biology of tolerance and hyperaccumulation for each element. The major scientific advances resulting from the study of hyperaccumulator plants in China are summarized and synthesized.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biodegradation, Environmental
  • Cadmium
  • China
  • Plant Roots
  • Pteris*
  • Sedum*
  • Soil Pollutants*
  • Zinc


  • Soil Pollutants
  • Cadmium
  • Zinc