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Uptake and distribution of Zn, Cu, Cd, and Pb in an aquatic plant Potamogeton natans
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Botany.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Botany.
2006 (English)In: Chemosphere, ISSN 0045-6535, E-ISSN 1879-1298, Vol. 63, no 2, 220-227 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A better understanding of metal uptake and translocation by aquatic plants can be used to enhance the performance of constructed wetland systems for stormwater treatment. Specifically, this study examines whether the uptake of Zn, Cu, Cd, and Pb by Potamogeton natans is via the leaves, stems, or roots, and whether there is translocation from organs of uptake to other plant parts. Competition between the metals at uptake and at the level of the cell wall-bound part of the metals accumulated in stem and leaf tissue was also examined. The results show that Zn, Cu, Cd, and Pb were taken up by the leaves, stems, and roots, with the highest accumulation found in the roots. At the elevated metal concentrations common in stormwater the uptake of Cu, but not of Zn, Cd, or Pb, by the roots was somewhat limited at uptake due to competition with other metals. Between 24% and 59% of the metal content was bound to the cell walls of the plant. Except in the case of Pb, the cell wall-bound fraction was generally smaller in stems than in leaves. No translocation of the metals to other parts of the plant was found, except for Cd which was translocated from leaf to stem and vice versa. Dispersion of metals from sediment to water through P. natans is therefore unlikely.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 63, no 2, 220-227 p.
Keyword [en]
Competition; Heavy metals; Stormwater; Translocation
National Category
Natural Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-23946DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2005.08.018OAI: diva2:196066
Part of urn:nbn:se:su:diva-613Available from: 2005-08-24 Created: 2005-08-24 Last updated: 2010-07-08Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Metal accumulation by plants: evaluation of the use of plants in stormwater treatment
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Metal accumulation by plants: evaluation of the use of plants in stormwater treatment
2005 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Metal contaminated stormwater, i.e. surface runoff in urban areas, can be treated in percolation systems, ponds, or wetlands to prevent the release of metals into receiving waters. Plants in such systems can, for example, attenuate water flow, bind sediment, and directly accumulate metals. By these actions plants affect metal mobility. This study aimed to examine the accumulation of Zn, Cu, Cd, and Pb in roots and shoots of plant species common in stormwater areas. Furthermore, submersed plants were used to examine the fate of metals: uptake, translocation, and leakage. Factors known to influence metal accumulation, such as metal ion competition, water salinity, and temperature, were also examined. The following plant species were collected in the field: terrestrial plants – Impatiens parviflora, Filipendula ulmaria, and Urtica dioica; emergent plants – Alisma-plantago aquatica, Juncus effusus, Lythrum salicaria, Sagittaria sagittifolia, and Phalaris arundinacea; free-floating plants – Lemna gibba and Lemna minor; and submersed plants – Elodea canadensis and Potamogeton natans. Furthermore, the two submersed plants, E. canadensis and P. natans, were used in climate chamber experiments to study the fate of the metals in the plant–water system.

Emergent and terrestrial plant species accumulated high concentrations of metals in their roots under natural conditions but much less so in their shoots, and the accumulation increased further with increased external concentration. The submersed and free-floating species accumulated high levels of metals in both their roots and shoots. Metals accumulated in the shoots of E. canadensis and P. natans derived mostly from direct metal uptake from the water column.

The accumulation of Zn, Cu, Cd, and Pb in submersed species was in general high, the highest concentrations being measured in the roots, followed by the leaves and stems, E. canadensis having higher accumulation capacity than P. natans. In E. canadensis the Cd uptake was passive, and the accumulation in dead plants exceeded the of living with time. The capacity to quickly accumulate Cd in the apoplast decreased with successive treatments. Some of the Cd accumulated was readily available for leakage. In P. natans, the presence of mixtures of metal ions, common in stormwater, did not alter the accumulation of the individual metals compared to when presented separately. It is therefore, proposed that the site of uptake is specific for each metal ion. In addition cell wall-bound fraction increased with increasing external concentration. Further, decreasing the temperature from 20ºC to 5ºC and increasing the salinity from 0‰ to 5‰ S reduced Zn and Cd uptake by a factor of two.

In P. natans the metals were not translocated within the plant, while in E. canadensis Cd moved between roots and shoots. Thus, E. canadensis as opposed to P. natans may increase the dispersion of metals from sediment via acropetal translocation. The low basipetal translocation implies that neither E. canadensis nor P. natans will directly mediate the immobilisation of metal to the sediment via translocation.

To conclude, emergent and terrestrial plant species seem to enhance metal stabilization in the soil/sediment. The submersed plants, when present, slightly increase the retention of metals via shoot accumulation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Botaniska institutionen, 2005. 56 p.
Elodea canadensis, Potamogeton natans, uptake, translocation, distribution, toxicity, salinity, temperature, and leakage
National Category
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-613 (URN)91-7155-111-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2005-09-16, föreläsningssalen, Botanicum, Lilla Frescativägen 5, Stockholm, 10:00
Available from: 2005-08-24 Created: 2005-08-24Bibliographically approved

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