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An improved understanding of soil Cd risk to humans and low cost methods to phytoextract Cd from contaminated soils to prevent soil Cd risks

Chaney, R.L., Reeves, P.G., Ryan, J.A., Simmons, R.W., Welch, R.M., Angle, J.S.
BioMetals 2004 v.17 no.5 pp. 549
soil pollution, polluted soils, cadmium, zinc, heavy metals, bioavailability, risk assessment, human health, phytoremediation, Oryza sativa, rice, dietary exposure, food contamination, Thlaspi caerulescens, metabolism, intestinal absorption, iron, calcium, dietary supplements, deficiency diseases, disease control
We believe greater consideration should be given the agronomic and nutritional/bioavailability factors that influence risk from Cd-contaminated soils. We have argued that the ability of rice to accumulate soil Cd in grain while excluding Fe, Zn and Ca (even though the soil contains 100-times more Zn than Cd) was important in adverse effects of soil Cd is farm families in Asia. Further, polished rice grain is deficient in Fe, Zn and Ca for humans, which promotes Cd absorption into duodenal cells. New kinetic studies clarified that dietary Cd is absorbed into duodenum enterocytes; 109Cd from a single meal remained in the duodenum for up to 16 days; part of the turnover pool 109Cd moved to the liver and kidneys by the end of the 64-day 'chase' period. Thus malnutrition induced by subsistence rice diets caused a higher absorption of dietary Cd and much higher potential risk from soil Cd than other crops. Because rice-induced Fe-Zn-Ca-malnutrition is so important in soil Cd risk, it seems evident that providing nutritional supplements to populations of exposed subsistence rice farmers could protect them against soil Cd during a period of soil remediation. In the long term, high Cd rice soils need to be remediated. Remediation by removal and replacement of contaminated soil is very expensive (on the order of $3 million/ha); while phytoextraction using the high Cd accumulating ecotypes of the Zn-Cd hyperaccumulator, Thlaspi caerulescens, should provide low cost soil Cd remediation.