Effects of Passivating Agents on the Availability of Cd and Pb and Microbial Community Function in a Contaminated Acidic Soil

  • Di ZhangEmail author
  • AiFang Ding


A 3-year pot experiment was carried out to investigate the efficiencies of hydroxyapatite (H), thiol-functionalized bentonite (T) and biochar (B) alone or in combination in remedying a Cd–Pb-contaminated soil. The application of passivating agents reduced the Cd and Pb mobility in acidic soil and enhanced soil microbial community function. The largest reductions in the Cd and Pb acid-soluble portions were observed under H (33.49%, 37.37%) and hydroxyapatite + thiol-functionalized bentonite + biochar (HTB, 36.70%, 37.31%), respectively. Biological analysis indicated that the AWCD (average well color development) of the B and HTB amendments was 1.42 and 1.51 times higher, respectively, than of untreated soil at 192 h. Moreover, the Shannon–Wiener, Simpson and Pielou indices were significantly increased in these two treatments relative to the values in the other amendment treatments. Therefore, combination amendments, such as HTB, which can reduce the bioavailability of both Cd and Pb and increase soil microbial activity, are recommended for practical applications.


Heavy metal Passivating agents Bioavailability Microbial community function 



This research was supported by the Scientific Research Project of Nanjing Xiaozhuang University (2018NXY52) and the Project for Environmental Science and Engineering Key Construction Discipline of Nanjing.


  1. Bian R, Joseph S, Cui L, Pan G, Li L, Liu X, Zhang A, Rutlidge H, Wong S, Chia C, Marjo C, Gong B, Munroe P, Donne S (2014) A three-year experiment confirms continuous immobilization of cadmium and lead in contaminated paddy field with biochar amendment. J Hazard Mater 272:121–128CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Boisson J, Ruttens A, Mench M (1999) Evaluation of hydroxyapatite as a metal immobilizing soil additive for the remediation of polluted soils: Part 1. Influence of hydroxyapatite on metal exchangeability in soil, plant growth and plant metal accumulation. Environ Pollut 104(2):225–233CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Brookes PC, Landman A, Pruden G, Jenkinson DS (1985) Chloroform fumigation and release of soil nitrogen: a rapid extraction method to measure microbial biomass nitrogen in soil. Soil Biol Biochem 17:837–842CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Cao XD, Ma LQ, Rhue DR, Appel CS (2004) Mechanisms of lead, copper, and zinc retention by phosphate rock. Environ Pollut 131(3):435–444CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cao X, Ma L, Liang Y, Gao B, Harris W (2011) Simultaneous immobilization of lead and atrazine in contaminated soils using dairy manure biochar. Environ Sci Technol 45:4884–4889CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cheng JZ, Li YL, Gao WC, Chen Y, Pan WJ, Lee XQ, Tang Y (2018) Effects of biochar on Cd and Pb mobility and microbial community composition in a calcareous soil planted with tobacco. Biol Fert Soils 54(3):373–383CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cui HB, Fan YC, Zhou J, Shi Y, Xu L, Guo XT, Hu YB, Gao LM (2016a) Availability of soil Cu and Cd and microbial community structure as affected by applications of amendments. China Environ Sci 36(1):197–205 (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  8. Cui LQ, Pan GX, Li LQ, Bian RJ, Liu XY, Yan JL, Quan GX, Ding C, Chen TM, Liu Y, Liu YM, Yin CT, Wei CP, Yang YG, Hussain Q (2016b) Continuous immobilization of cadmium and lead in biochar amended contaminated paddy soil: a five-year field experiment. Ecol Eng 93:1–8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Gu JF, Zhou H, Yang WT (2016) Effect of combined soil amendment regulating chemical forms of cadmium and arsenic in paddy soil and their bioaccumulation and translocation in rice. Acta Pedol Sin 53(6):1576–1585 (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  10. Guo FY, Ding CF, Zhou ZG, Huang GX, Wang XX (2018) Effects of combined amendments on crop yield and cadmium uptake in two cadmium contaminated soils under rice-wheat rotation. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 148:303–310CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hmid A, Chami ZA, Sillen W, Vangronsveld J (2015) Olive mill waste biochar: apromising soil amendment for metal immobilization in contaminated soils. Environ Sci Pollut Res 22(2):1444–1456CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Houben D, Evrard L, Sonnet P (2013) Mobility, bioavailability and pH dependent leaching of cadmium, zinc and lead in a contaminated soil amended with biochar. Chemosphere 92:1450–1457CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Hu HQ, Huang YZ, Huang QY, Liu YH, Hu C (2017) Research progress of heavy metals chemical immobilization in farm land. J Plant Nutr Fert 23(6):1676–1685 (in Chinese)Google Scholar
  14. Huang LM, Yu GW, Zou FZ, Long XX, Wu QT (2018) Shift of soil bacterial community and decrease of metals bioavailability after immobilization of a multi-metal contaminated acidic soil by inorganic-organic mixed amendments: a field study. Appl Soil Ecol 130:104–119CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Islam M, Chandra MP, Patel R (2010) Physico-chemical characterization of hydroxyapatite and its application towards removal of nitrate from water. J Environ Manag 91:1883–1891CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Kolb SE, Fermanich KJ, Dornbush ME (2009) Effect of charcoal quantity on microbial biomass and activity in temperate soils. Soil Sci Soc Am J 73(4):1173–1181CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Lehmann J, Rillig MC, Thies J, Masiello CA, Hockaday WC (2011) Biochar effects on soil biota—a review. Soil Biol Biochem 43:1812–1836CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Liu Y, Lu H, Yang S, Wang Y (2016) Impacts of biochar addition on rice yield and soil properties in a cold waterlogged paddy for two crop seasons. Field Crop Res 191:161–167CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Liu C, Wang L, Yin J, Qi LP, Feng Y (2018) Combined amendments of nano-hydroxyapatite immobilized Cadmium in contaminated soil-potato (Solanumtuberosum L.) system. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 100:581–587CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Mignardi S, Corami A, Ferrini V (2012) Evaluation of the effectiveness of phosphate treatment for the remediation of mine waste soils contaminated with Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn. Chemosphere 86: 354–360CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Moon DH, Park JW, Chang YY, Ok YS, Lee SS, Ahmad M, Koutsospyros A, Park JH, Baek K (2013) Immobilization of lead in contaminated firing range soil using biochar. Environ Sci Pollut Res 20:8464–8471CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Pang TW, Yang ZJ, Huang YC, Lei XY, Zeng X, Li XX (2018) Adsorption properties of thiol-modified, sodium-modified and acidified bentonite for Cu2+, Pb2+ and Zn2+. Spectrosc Spect Anal 38(4):1203–1208Google Scholar
  23. Preston-Mafham J, Boddyand L, Randerson PF (2002) Analysis of microbial community functional diversity using sole-carbon-source utilization profiles-a critique. FEMS Microbiol Ecol 42:1–14Google Scholar
  24. Saqib B, Muhammad S, Qaiser H (2018) Influence of organic and inorganic passivators on Cd and Pb stabilization and microbial biomass in a contaminated paddy soil. J Soil Sediment 18(9):2948–2959CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Vance ED, Brookes PC, Jenkinson DS (1987) An extraction method for measuring soil microbial biomass C. Soil Biol Biochem 19:703–707CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Wen J, Yi Y, Zeng G (2016) Effects of modified zeolite on the removal and stabilization of heavy metals in contaminated lake sediment using BCR sequential extraction. J Environ Manag 178:63–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Xu C, Chen HX, Xiang Q (2018) Effect of peanut shell and wheat straw biochar on the availabilityof Cd and Pb in a soil–rice (Oryza sativa L.) system. Environ Sci Pollut Res 25:1147–1156CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Xue Y, Gao B, Yao Y, Inyang M, Zhang M, Zimmerman A, Ro K (2012) Hydrogen peroxide modification enhances the ability of biochar (hydrochar) produced from hydrothermal carbonization of peanut hull to remove aqueos heavy metals: batch and column tests. Biochem Eng J 200–202:673–680Google Scholar
  29. Zhang D, Li XG, Wang XX (2015) Accumulation of soil available phosphorus under pig manure application limits microbial community function in upland soils. Int J Agric Biol 17:929–946CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Zhang RH, Li ZG, Liu XD, Wang BC, Zhou GL, Huang XX, Lin CF, Wang AH, Brooks M (2017) Immobilization and bioavailability of heavy metals in greenhouse soils amended with rice straw-derived biochar. Ecol Eng 98:183–188CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Zheng RL, Cai C, Liang JH, Huang Q, Chen Z, Huang YZ, Sun GX (2012) The effects of biochars from rice residue on the formation of iron plaque and the accumulation of Cd, Zn, Pb, As in rice (Oryza sativa L.) seedlings. Chemosphere 89(7):856–862CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Nanjing Xiaozhuang UniversityNanjingPeople’s Republic of China

Personalised recommendations