Main content area

Bioremediation of soils contaminated by PAHs: Mutagenicity as a tool to validate environmental quality

de Souza Pohren, Roberta, Rocha, Jocelita Aparecida Vaz, Horn, Kauê Assis, Vargas, Vera Maria Ferrão
Chemosphere 2019 v.214 pp. 659-668
Salmonella, United States Environmental Protection Agency, biodegradation, bioremediation, byproducts, decontamination, environmental quality, inoculum, mutagenesis, mutagenicity, mutagens, polluted soils, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, risk, soil sampling, wood preservatives
Bioremediation can be used as one of the decontamination techniques for areas contamined by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). However the effective biodegradation of these compounds must take into account the possible toxic and mutagenic effects that might persist. In this study the mutagenic potential of soil samples from an area contaminated by wood preservatives was evaluated. The area had already been submitted to a simulated bioremediation process in a microcosm, using two different inoculums (1 and 2), and comparing them to the decay of PAHs. Organic extracts were prepared before and after bioremediation, where the 16 PAHs considered a priority by USEPA were analyzed and tested using the Salmonella/microsome assay. The extracts were analyzed in strains TA98, TA97a and TA100 (+S9mix/-S9mix), YG1041 and YG1042. Considering Inoculum 1 only as bioaugmented and Inoculum 2 also stimulated and enriched, the concentrations of PAHs and mutagenic effect were different. The former identified a greater reduction of mutagenesis and a smaller decrease of PAHs while the latter showed greater mutagenic power even associated with the greatest reduction of PAHS. The possible generation of degradation byproducts with high mutagenic power after a partial biodegradation process can be considered. In strains YG1041 and YG 1042 the mutagenesis values before bioremediation were 747 and 567 rev/g soil, respectively. Although the efficiency of bioremediation was observed, the associated damage indicates that the analysis of contaminants and their relationship with mutagenic effects are a fundamental stage for the effective evaluation of the risks and efficiency of bioremediation processes.