The effect of cadmium-induced oxidative stress, with or without glutathione supplementation, was investigated in the single cell eukaryotic phytoflagellate, Euglena gracilis strains Z and its achlorophyllous mutant SMZ as experimental models. Both these strains actively synthesize thiols to prevent or resist cadmium toxicity. The content of glutathione, as a representative antioxidant, was also examined in both strains. Exposure to cadmium induced heat-shock protein 70 (HSP70) synthesis in both strains of E. gracilis. Glutathione supplementation also induced HSP70. Overall, these results indicate that glutathione was closely linked to the induction of stress-related proteins. The sensitivity to cadmium-stress was higher in strain Z than SMZ. The results suggest that chloroplasts may have a role in the regulation of HSP70 expression. The relationship between HSP70 and GSH levels is still far from understood, and further research may shed light upon their up-regulation in the presence of Cd.