Biochar has been used previously for remediation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in contaminated soils for years, which has achieved remarkable results in improving removal of soil PAHs and reducing PAHs uptake in crops. However, the underlying mechanism of biochar application in reducing the uptake and accumulation of PAHs in winter wheat remains unclear. Pot trials using PAHs-contaminated soils were conducted for whole plant growth period of winter wheat, which were amended with 2% (w/w) bamboo biochar (BB), coconut shell biochar (CB) and maize straw biochar (MSB) or not (CK). Compared with CK, application of the three types of biochar significantly (p < 0.01) reduced grain PAHs concentration, the total equivalent concentration (TEC) values and the incremental lifetime cancer risk (ILCR) of grain PAHs, indicating that application of biochar reduced the exposure risk of PAHs in wheat grain, especially for MSB. Consistently, application of the three types of biochar significantly (p < 0.05) reduced uptake and accumulation of PAHs in root and stem of wheat, which may be due to that application of biochar enhanced the degradation of PAHs in the rhizosphere soil. Compared with CK, application of the three types of biochar significantly (p < 0.05) reduced the concentration of PAHs in the rhizosphere soil by 15.9%, 26.1% and 33.7%, respectively. It was found that the degradation rate of HMW PAHs (high molecular weight PAHs, 5-6 ring PAHs) was significantly (p < 0.05) higher than that of LMW PAHs (low molecular weight PAHs, 2-4 ring PAHs) regardless of types of biochar used. Additionally, application of the three types of biochar significantly increased the relative abundance of dominant bacterial phyla and genera in soil. Redundancy analysis and correlation analysis results also showed that there was a strong correlation between the removal rate of PAHs and dominant bacteria in the rhizosphere soil. The present study indicated that biochar could reduce dietary risk of PAHs in wheat grains mainly by increasing the abundance of bacteria related to PAHs degradation, promoting the biodegradation of PAHs in the rhizosphere soil and consequently reducing PAHs uptake in wheat. Copyright © 2023 Elsevier B.V.
CitationWang, J., Bao, H., Man, Y. B., Cai, J., Li, J., Sun, B., & Wu, F. (2023). Biochar reduces uptake and accumulation of PAHs in winter wheat growing in PAHs-contaminated soils. Pedosphere. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1016/j.pedsph.2023.01.005
- Winter wheat
- Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons