Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 9, pp 8669–8675 | Cite as

Feet in danger: short exposure to contaminated soil causing health damage—an experimental study

  • Flavio Manoel Rodrigues da Silva Júnior
  • Edlaine Acosta Pinto
  • Tatiane Britto da Silveira
  • Edariane Menestrino Garcia
  • Adriane Maria Netto de Oliveira
  • Ana Luíza Muccillo-Baisch
Research Article


In this study, hematological and behavioral changes in Wistar rats exposed to soil collected from urban areas next to an industrial complex were investigated. Animals were exposed to soil samples placed at the bottom of cages for 4 days. After this period, behavioral parameters were measured by the open field test and the elevated plus-maze. Blood was collected to measure hematological parameters. The soil from the vicinity of the oil refining industry caused changes in hematological parameters and altered behavioral parameters in both tests. The soil from the vicinity of the petroleum refining industry and fertilizer industries increased the density of white blood cells and decreased exploratory activity in the exposed animals. The results demonstrate that contact with contaminated soils, even for short periods, can cause physiological damage in organisms and that special attention should be given to people who live under constant exposure to these soils.


Contaminated soils Open field Elevated plus-maze Hematology 


Compliance with ethical standards

All the animal experiments carried out followed the Brazilian standards dictated by the Brazilian College of Animal Experimentation (COBEA, 1991) and were approved by the Ethics Committee of the Health Area Research/FURG (No. 53/2008).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Flavio Manoel Rodrigues da Silva Júnior
    • 1
    • 2
  • Edlaine Acosta Pinto
    • 1
    • 2
  • Tatiane Britto da Silveira
    • 1
    • 2
  • Edariane Menestrino Garcia
    • 1
  • Adriane Maria Netto de Oliveira
    • 2
  • Ana Luíza Muccillo-Baisch
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratório de Ensaios Farmacológicos e Toxicológicos - LEFT, Instituto de Ciências BiológicasUniversidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul – FURGRio GrandeBrazil
  2. 2.Programa de Pós Graduação em Ciências da SaúdeUniversidade Federal do Rio Grande (FURG)Rio GrandeBrazil

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