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Volume 280, 2021, 130690

Plants exert beneficial influence on soil microbiome in a HCH contaminated soil revealing advantage of microbe-assisted plant-based HCH remediation of a dumpsite

Ispreet Kaura,1, Vivek Kumar Gaurb,1, Raj Kumar Regarb, Aditi Royc, Pankaj Kumar Srivastavaa, Rajeev Gaurd, Natesan Manickamb, Saroj Kanta Barika

Department of Environmental Technologies, CSIR-National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow, India.


Persistence of hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) pesticide is a major problem for its disposal. Soil microflora plays an important role in remediating contaminated sites. Keeping concepts of microbial- and phyto-remediation together, the difference between soil microflora with and without association of HCH accumulating plant species was studied. Metagenomic analysis among the non-plant soil (BS) (∑HCH 434.19 mg/g), rhizospheric soil of shrubs (RSS) (∑HCH 157.31 mg/g), and rhizospheric soil of trees (RSD) (∑HCH 105.39 mg/g) revealed significant differences in microbial communities. Shrubs and trees occurred at a long-term dumpsite accumulated α- and β- HCH residues. Plant rhizospheric soils exhibited high richness and evenness with higher diversity indices compared to the non-plant soil. Order Rhizobiales was most abundant in all soils and Streptomycetales was absent in the BS soil. Proteobacteria and Ascomycota were highest in BS soil, while Actinobacteria was enriched in both the plant rhizospheric soil samples. In BS soil, Pseudomonas, Sordaria, Caulobacter, Magnetospirillum, Rhodospirillum were abundant. While, genera Actinoplanes, Streptomyces, Bradyrhizobium, Rhizobium, Azospirillum, Agrobacterium are abundant in RSD soil. Selected plants have accumulated HCH residues from soil and exerted positive impacts on soil microbial communities in HCH contaminated site. This study advocates microbe-assisted plant-based bioremediation strategy to remediate HCH contamination.

Keywords: Metagenomics, Hexachlorocyclohexane, Plants, Rhizosphere, Soil, Pesticide.

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