Get access

Phytic acid in green leaves

Authors

  • H. Hadi Alkarawi,

    1. Functional Ecology Group, Institute of Biology and Environmental Sciences, University of Oldenburg, Oldenburg, Germany
    2. Foundation of Technical Education, Al-Musaib Technical College, Babylon, Iraq
    Search for more papers by this author
  • G. Zotz

    Corresponding author
    1. Functional Ecology Group, Institute of Biology and Environmental Sciences, University of Oldenburg, Oldenburg, Germany
    • Correspondence

      G. Zotz, Department of Biology and Environmental Sciences, Functional Ecology of Plants, 26111 Oldenburg, Germany.

      E-mail: gerhard.zotz@uni-oldenburg.de

    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

Phytic acid or phytate, the free-acid form of myo-inositolhexakiphosphate, is abundant in many seeds and fruits, where it represents the major storage form of phosphorus. Although also known from other plant tissues, available reports on the occurrence of phytic acid, e.g. in leaves, have never been compiled, nor have they been critically reviewed. We found 45 published studies with information on phytic acid content in leaves. Phytic acid was almost always detected when studies specifically tried to detect it, and accounted for up to 98% of total P. However, we argue that such extreme values, which rival findings from storage organs, are dubious and probably result from measurement errors. Excluding these high values from further quantitative analysis, foliar phytic acid-P averaged 2.3 mg·g−1, and represented, on average, 7.6% of total P. Remarkably, the ratio of phytic acid-P to total P did not increase with total P, we even detected a negative correlation of the two variables within one species, Manihot esculenta. This enigmatic finding warrants further attention.

Get access to the full text of this article

Ancillary