Plant–Microbe Interaction for the Removal of Heavy Metal from Contaminated Site

  • Asit MandalEmail author
  • J. K. Thakur
  • Asha Sahu
  • Sudeshna Bhattacharjya
  • M. C. Manna
  • Ashok K. Patra


The diversity of microbes present in the rhizosphere plays a significant role in nutrient cycling and soil sustainability. Plant–microbe-modulated phytoremediation is a viable technology for the cleanup of contaminated environments. Several plants that were identified have various degrees of capacity to eliminate, degrade or detoxify, metabolize, or immobilize a wide range of soil contaminants. Plant-based remediation technologies are not yet commercialized because of its major limitation of slow process and restricted bioavailability of the contaminants, and it is greatly influenced by the climatic factors. The extensive use of plants can overcome most of the limitations by exploring the potential of microbe–plant–metal interaction. The biogeochemical process occurring in the root zone can influence on several rhizobacteria and mycorrhizae directly linked with microbial metabolite synthesis. Thus, a holistic approach of novel remediation technologies and understanding of plant–microbe–contaminant interaction would help for customizing phytoremediation process in relation to site-specific contamination. There is a huge challenge to remediation of contaminated sites by long-term accumulation of heavy metal. Unlike organic contaminants, metals are very much resistant to degradation, and in the long run, continuous accumulation may cause food chain contamination. It is very important to decontaminate the polluted sites in order to reach safe level of metal concentration below the threshold limit of toxicity. Recent studies revealed that phytoextraction, mainly the use of hyperaccumulator plants to extract toxic metals from the contaminated sites, has emerged as a cost-effective, eco-friendly cleanup technology. Novel, efficient microbes and their potential use in the plant rhizosphere could further enhance the phytoremediation for wider range of soil contaminants.


Heavy Metal Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungus Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Extracellular Polymeric Substance Heavy Metal Bioavailability 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Asit Mandal
    • 1
    Email author
  • J. K. Thakur
    • 1
  • Asha Sahu
    • 1
  • Sudeshna Bhattacharjya
    • 1
  • M. C. Manna
    • 1
  • Ashok K. Patra
    • 1
  1. 1.ICAR-Indian Institute of Soil ScienceNabibagh, BhopalIndia

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