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Bioaccumulative and conchological assessment of heavy metal transfer in a soil-plant-snail food chain.

Nica DV, Bura M, Gergen I, Harmanescu M, Bordean DM - Chem Cent J (2012)

Bottom Line: There were significant differences among sampling sites for WN, SH, and RSH when compared with reference snails.In contrast, RSH correlated significantly only with Pb concentration in hepatopancreas.Therefore, our results highlight the Roman snail (Helix pomatia) potential to be used in environmental monitoring studies as bioindicator of HM pollution.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Banat's University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine from Timisoara, Faculty of Food Processing Technology, Calea Aradului 119, RO 300645, Timisoara, Romania. despina.bordean@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT

Background: Copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), cadmium (Cd), and lead (Pb) can pose serious threats to environmental health because they tend to bioaccumulate in terrestrial ecosystems. We investigated under field conditions the transfer of these heavy metals in a soil-plant-snail food chain in Banat area, Romania. The main goal of this paper was to assess the Roman snail (Helix pomatia) usefulness in environmental monitoring as bioindicator of heavy metal accumulation. Eight sampling sites, selected by different history of heavy metal (HM) exposure, were chosen to be sampled for soil, nettle leaves, and newly matured snails. This study also aimed to identify the putative effects of HM accumulation in the environment on phenotypic variability in selected shell features, which included shell height (SH), relative shell height (RSH), and whorl number (WN).

Results: Significantly higher amounts of HMs were accumulated in snail hepatopancreas and not in foot. Cu, Zn, and Cd have biomagnified in the snail body, particularly in the hepatopancreas. In contrast, Pb decreased when going up into the food chain. Zn, Cd, and Pb correlated highly with each other at all levels of the investigated food chain. Zn and Pb exhibited an effective soil-plant transfer, whereas in the snail body only foot Cu concentration was correlated with that in soil. There were significant differences among sampling sites for WN, SH, and RSH when compared with reference snails. WN was strongly correlated with Cd and Pb concentrations in nettle leaves but not with Cu and Zn. SH was independent of HM concentrations in soil, snail hepatopancreas, and foot. However, SH correlated negatively with nettle leaves concentrations for each HM except Cu. In contrast, RSH correlated significantly only with Pb concentration in hepatopancreas.

Conclusions: The snail hepatopancreas accumulates high amounts of HMs, and therefore, this organ can function as a reliable biomarker for tracking HM bioavailability in soil. Long-term exposure to HMs via contaminated food might influence the variability of shell traits in snail populations. Therefore, our results highlight the Roman snail (Helix pomatia) potential to be used in environmental monitoring studies as bioindicator of HM pollution.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Map showing the locations of soil, nettle leaves, and snail sampling sites. Legend. 1 – site THM1; 2 – site THM2; 3 – site THM3; 4 – site THM4; 5 – site THM5; 6 – site THM6; 7 – site THM7; R – site THR.
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Figure 6: Map showing the locations of soil, nettle leaves, and snail sampling sites. Legend. 1 – site THM1; 2 – site THM2; 3 – site THM3; 4 – site THM4; 5 – site THM5; 6 – site THM6; 7 – site THM7; R – site THR.

Mentions: The Roman snail (Helix pomatia Linnaeus, 1758) is a common East and Central European snail species of the family Helicidae. In Romania, it inhabits forests, gardens, vineyards, and open habitats that are confined to calcareous substrate. The systematic classification was determined according to morphometric criteria[54]. To provide representative and homogenous data, we designed our experiments to include only newly matured specimens of Roman snail (Helix pomatia). The snails were collected, during May 2011, from eight locations in the Banat area, Romania (Timis and Caras-Severin counties), as shown in Figure 6. Being located in a low-anthropized area, away from major sources of pollution[55], the vilage of Salbagelu Nou (Caras-Severin county) has been chosen as reference site (THR). All the other sampling sites shared one set of environmental conditions deemed important for assessing the reliability of Roman snail as bioindicator species in the study unit. Therefore, all locations have been exposed for at least 30 years to industrial pollution, and were located within a 10 km-radius of former and/or actual major sources of contamination (see Table3). At each plot at least 60 specimens were sampled from a few square meters, and split into three equal samples. To distinguish the newly matured snails from their elder counterparts we used the aperture lip as a benchmark of maturation. Older snails had a hardened, thickened, and turned-out aperture lip. In contrast, the newly matured juveniles possess a thinner and softer aperture lip.


Bioaccumulative and conchological assessment of heavy metal transfer in a soil-plant-snail food chain.

Nica DV, Bura M, Gergen I, Harmanescu M, Bordean DM - Chem Cent J (2012)

Map showing the locations of soil, nettle leaves, and snail sampling sites. Legend. 1 – site THM1; 2 – site THM2; 3 – site THM3; 4 – site THM4; 5 – site THM5; 6 – site THM6; 7 – site THM7; R – site THR.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3472253&req=5

Figure 6: Map showing the locations of soil, nettle leaves, and snail sampling sites. Legend. 1 – site THM1; 2 – site THM2; 3 – site THM3; 4 – site THM4; 5 – site THM5; 6 – site THM6; 7 – site THM7; R – site THR.
Mentions: The Roman snail (Helix pomatia Linnaeus, 1758) is a common East and Central European snail species of the family Helicidae. In Romania, it inhabits forests, gardens, vineyards, and open habitats that are confined to calcareous substrate. The systematic classification was determined according to morphometric criteria[54]. To provide representative and homogenous data, we designed our experiments to include only newly matured specimens of Roman snail (Helix pomatia). The snails were collected, during May 2011, from eight locations in the Banat area, Romania (Timis and Caras-Severin counties), as shown in Figure 6. Being located in a low-anthropized area, away from major sources of pollution[55], the vilage of Salbagelu Nou (Caras-Severin county) has been chosen as reference site (THR). All the other sampling sites shared one set of environmental conditions deemed important for assessing the reliability of Roman snail as bioindicator species in the study unit. Therefore, all locations have been exposed for at least 30 years to industrial pollution, and were located within a 10 km-radius of former and/or actual major sources of contamination (see Table3). At each plot at least 60 specimens were sampled from a few square meters, and split into three equal samples. To distinguish the newly matured snails from their elder counterparts we used the aperture lip as a benchmark of maturation. Older snails had a hardened, thickened, and turned-out aperture lip. In contrast, the newly matured juveniles possess a thinner and softer aperture lip.

Bottom Line: There were significant differences among sampling sites for WN, SH, and RSH when compared with reference snails.In contrast, RSH correlated significantly only with Pb concentration in hepatopancreas.Therefore, our results highlight the Roman snail (Helix pomatia) potential to be used in environmental monitoring studies as bioindicator of HM pollution.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Banat's University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine from Timisoara, Faculty of Food Processing Technology, Calea Aradului 119, RO 300645, Timisoara, Romania. despina.bordean@gmail.com.

ABSTRACT

Background: Copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), cadmium (Cd), and lead (Pb) can pose serious threats to environmental health because they tend to bioaccumulate in terrestrial ecosystems. We investigated under field conditions the transfer of these heavy metals in a soil-plant-snail food chain in Banat area, Romania. The main goal of this paper was to assess the Roman snail (Helix pomatia) usefulness in environmental monitoring as bioindicator of heavy metal accumulation. Eight sampling sites, selected by different history of heavy metal (HM) exposure, were chosen to be sampled for soil, nettle leaves, and newly matured snails. This study also aimed to identify the putative effects of HM accumulation in the environment on phenotypic variability in selected shell features, which included shell height (SH), relative shell height (RSH), and whorl number (WN).

Results: Significantly higher amounts of HMs were accumulated in snail hepatopancreas and not in foot. Cu, Zn, and Cd have biomagnified in the snail body, particularly in the hepatopancreas. In contrast, Pb decreased when going up into the food chain. Zn, Cd, and Pb correlated highly with each other at all levels of the investigated food chain. Zn and Pb exhibited an effective soil-plant transfer, whereas in the snail body only foot Cu concentration was correlated with that in soil. There were significant differences among sampling sites for WN, SH, and RSH when compared with reference snails. WN was strongly correlated with Cd and Pb concentrations in nettle leaves but not with Cu and Zn. SH was independent of HM concentrations in soil, snail hepatopancreas, and foot. However, SH correlated negatively with nettle leaves concentrations for each HM except Cu. In contrast, RSH correlated significantly only with Pb concentration in hepatopancreas.

Conclusions: The snail hepatopancreas accumulates high amounts of HMs, and therefore, this organ can function as a reliable biomarker for tracking HM bioavailability in soil. Long-term exposure to HMs via contaminated food might influence the variability of shell traits in snail populations. Therefore, our results highlight the Roman snail (Helix pomatia) potential to be used in environmental monitoring studies as bioindicator of HM pollution.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus