Environmental Monitoring and Assessment

, Volume 178, Issue 1–4, pp 373–381 | Cite as

Bioassay as monitoring system for lead phytoremediation through Crinum asiaticum L.

  • Mayank Varun
  • Rohan D’Souza
  • Devendra Kumar
  • Manoj S. Paul


Toxicity of lead in soil is well documented and established. Phytoremediation has gained attention as a cheap, easily applicable, and eco-friendly clean-up technology. Chemical methods are used to assess exact levels and type of pollutants but heavy metal content in soil can also be evaluated indirectly by estimation of phytotoxicity levels using bioassays. Plant bioassays through fast germinating cereals can indicate not only the level of pollution and its effects on growth and survival but also the progress of phytoremediation process. The performance of barley Hordeum vulgare L. seedlings as bioassay for assessment of changes in the levels of lead (Pb) at three concentrations, i.e., 300 (T1), 600 (T2), and 1,200 ppm (T3) in the soil was evaluated while testing the efficiency of Crinum asiaticum L. as a phytoremedial tool. At the first assessment, i.e., 30 DAT (days after treatment) shoot and root lengths of seedlings decreased with increasing concentrations of Pb. As the study progressed, a decrease in levels of Pb was accompanied by better germinability and growth of barley. At 120 DAT seedling growth in all the treatments were comparable to control. In T1, T2, and T3 soils, 74.5%, 83.7%, and 91.2% reduction in lead content was observed at 120 DAT. Highly significant correlations between decreasing pollutant (Pb) content in the soil, seed germination, and seedling growth of barley H. vulgare were found. The differences in root and shoot length as well as overall growth pattern are indicative of the suitability of barley as a bio-monitoring tool.


Heavy metal Bio-monitoring Lead Bioaccumulate Bioassay 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mayank Varun
    • 1
  • Rohan D’Souza
    • 1
  • Devendra Kumar
    • 2
  • Manoj S. Paul
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BotanySt. John’s CollegeAgraIndia
  2. 2.Defence Research & Development Organization (DRDO)JodhpurIndia

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