Assessing the influence of sewage sludge and derived-biochar in immobilization and transformation of heavy metals in polluted soil: Impact on intracellular free radical formation in maize

Rashid, Muhammad Saqib
Liu, Guijian
Yousaf, Balal
Hamid, Yasir
Rehman, Abdul
Munir, Mehr Ahmed Mujtaba
Arif, Muhammad
Ahmed, Rafay
Song, Yu
© 2022 Elsevier LtdAs one of the most common ways to get rid of municipal waste, landfill leachate, waste with complicated compositions and high levels of contaminants, has become a significant threat to the world's environment. Here, the impact of sewage sludge (SS) and derived-biochar (SSB) amendments on the immobilization and potential mobility of heavy metals in a contaminated soil-plant system was investigated. The sequential fractionation findings showed that using SS-2%, SSB-2%, and SSBC-1% reduced the potential mobility of heavy metals while increasing the residual fraction in polluted soils. The translocation and bioconcentration factors showed that heavy metals were slightly transferred into shoots from roots and lowered accumulation in roots from contaminated soils. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) and X-ray photoelectron spectrum (XPS) comprehensive characterization results indicated the significant role of applied amendments for heavy metals transformation from the exchangeable-soluble fractions to the least available form by lowering their mobility to confirm the adsorption-based complexes, which results in the surface adsorption of heavy metals with functional groups. The electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) results indicated the dominance of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the intracellular formation of hydroxyl radicals (•OH) in maize plant roots and shoots. ROS (•OH) generation plays a critical influence in the interaction between the physiological processes of plants and heavy metals. Moreover, all the amendments increased maize growth and biomass production. Our study suggests that alone and combined application of SS and SSB have great potential to remediate heavy metals contaminated soil for environmental sustainability.
Environmental Pollution


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Citation Formats
M. S. Rashid et al., “Assessing the influence of sewage sludge and derived-biochar in immobilization and transformation of heavy metals in polluted soil: Impact on intracellular free radical formation in maize,” Environmental Pollution, vol. 309, pp. 0–0, 2022, Accessed: 00, 2022. [Online]. Available: