Publish Your Research Online
Get Recognition - International Audience
Request for an Author Account | Login | Submit Article
|HOME||FAQ||TOP AUTHORS||FORUMS||PUBLISH ARTICLE|
Phytoremediation: Super-plants Technology to Clean up the EnvironmentBY: Rohini Bansode | Category: Environmental-Biotechnology | Submitted: 2015-05-01 08:35:58
Article Summary: "Toxic heavy metals have led to the contamination of environment and are harmful to the human health. Phytoremediation is the use of green plants and their associated microorganisms, soil amendments and agronomic practices to remove, contain or render harmless environmental contaminants..."
Toxic pollutants have led to the contamination of environment and become a serious issue worldwide, which directly affect crop yield, and soil fertility. The various toxic heavy metals from mines or factories and industrial waste have been accumulated in inappropriate places and these are harmful to the human health and environment. Therefore, cleaning them is one of the most challenging works. So, there is need to use an alternative approach to overcome the impacts of toxic chemicals on various sources. In this context, green plants can be used as an alternative strategy to clean contaminated sites. Many plants, called hyperaccumulators, accumulate metal contaminants in considerable quantities. This use of plants to clean up contaminated areas is called phytoremediation.
Phytoremediation is the use of green plants and their associated microorganisms, soil amendments and agronomic practices to remove, contain or render harmless environmental contaminants. The term phytoremediationis a Latin word combined with plant and remedy.
Depending upon the type of contaminant, phytoremediation process is broadly categorized as:
1. Phytodegradation: is also called as phyto-transformation in which contaminants can be degraded through compounds (eg. Enzymes) produced by the plants. Eg. Carrots are used to absorb DDT (dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethylene).
2. Rizodegradation: Also called as plant-assisted bioremediation orphyto-stimulation. In this contaminants are broken down in the rhizosphere (soil surrounding the roots of plants) through microbial activity. Comparatively, this process is slower than phytodegradation.
3. Phytovolatilisation: Plants remove inorganic contaminants by volatilisation or by metal accumulation. This process is ueful for the removal of mercury. A bacterial mercuric ion reductase has been transferred to A. thaliana. This transgenic plant absorbs mercury and reduces it to volatile Hg.
4. Phytostabilization: This process is used to clean up several contaminated sites. In this, plants are chosen for their tolerance to site conditions, and the contaminants become sequestered in cell wall lignins of root tissue.
5. Phytoextraction: Also called as phyto-accumulation, refers to uptake of metals from soil by plant roots into above ground portion of plants. Metals viz., nickel, zinc, and copper are the best candidates for removal by phytoextraction because more than 400 known plants that absorb unusually large amounts of these metals only.
Several attempts are being made to construct transgenic plants that show increasing tolerance to heavy metals and thus these plants can be suitable for phytoremediation. The majority of these novels plants have been tested only under laboratory conditions and very few have been grown in the field (Gratao et al., 2005).
Table 1. List of transgenic plants showing tolerance to heavy metals (Gratao et al., 2005)
Advantages of Phytoremediation:
1. Phtoremediationis cheap and cost effective technology
2. Presence of plants on sites makes them more attractive as compare to other methods
Image Source: http:// img=3274165_sensors-09-05040f1&req=4
3. Presence and condition of plant is easily monitored
But, there are certain limitations such as - The site must be sufficiently large for easy plant cultivation, most of plants are pollutant specific, less availability of universal plant type and disposal problems after remediation.
Thus the approach is being refined and further research should be focused more on transgenic plants which have been considerably shown increased tolerance to toxic heavy metals. Ultimately this genetic engineering would greatly facilitate large scale practical applications of the technology.
1. Krystofova, O., Adam, V., Opatrilova, R., Babula, P., Zehnalek, J., Kaiser, J. 2009. Sunflower Plants as Bioindicators of Environmental Pollution with Lead (II) Ions. Sensors, 9(7), 5040-5058.
2. Gratao, P. L., Prasad, M. N., Cardoso, P. F., Lea, P. J., Azevedo, R. A. 2005. Phtyoremediation: green technology for the clean up of toxic metals in the environment. Braz. J. Plant. Physiol., 17(1), 53-64
Image Source: Krystofova, O., Adam, V., Opatrilova, R., Babula, P., Zehnalek, J.,Kaiser, J. 2009. Sunflower Plants as Bioindicators of Environmental Pollution with Lead (II) Ions. Sensors, 9(7), 5040-5058.
About Author / Additional Info:
I am currently pursuing Ph.D in Plant Biotechnology from Kerala Agricultural University, Thrissur.
Comments on this article: (0 comments so far)
• The Role of Lactic Acid Bacteria in Preventing Respiratory Infections
• Laboratory Data For Blood Test
• Abnormalities Caused by Genetic Disorder in Humans
• Advances in Development of Marker-Free Transgenic Plants
Latest Articles in "Environmental-Biotechnology" category:
• Advantages and Disadvantages of Biofuels
• Phytoremediation For Heavy Metals
• Biotechnology For a Clean Environment
• Methods of Wastewater Treatment
• Steps Involved in Nitrogen Cycle
• Biotechnology and Environment Protection
• Greenhouse Effect - Importance and Types
• Biological Degradation of Xenobiotics
• Phytoremediation - Greener Approach to Control Pollution
• Impact of Waste Management
• Waste Water Treatment Steps: Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Treatment
• Bioremediation - A Weapon to Tackle Oil Spills
• Phytoremediation - Use of green plants to remove pollutants
• The History of Botany | Botanists in Philippines
• Bioremediation by Cold Tolerant Microbes
• Cold Adaptation by Microorganisms
• Succession Stages of Xerosere
• The Climax Concept - Theories and Categories
• Succession Stages of Hydrosere
Important Disclaimer: All articles on this website are for general information only and is not a professional or experts advice. We do not own any responsibility for correctness or authenticity of the information presented in this article, or any loss or injury resulting from it. We do not endorse these articles, we are neither affiliated with the authors of these articles nor responsible for their content. Please see our disclaimer section for complete terms.
Copyright © 2010 biotecharticles.com - Do not copy articles from this website.
ARTICLE CATEGORIES :
| Disclaimer/Privacy/TOS | Submission Guidelines | Contact Us