5 research outputs found

    Uptake of Perfluoroalkyl Acids into Edible Crops via Land Applied Biosolids: Field and Greenhouse Studies

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    The presence of perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) in biosolids destined for use in agriculture has raised concerns about their potential to enter the terrestrial food chain via bioaccumulation in edible plants. Uptake of PFAAs by greenhouse lettuce (Lactuca sativa) and tomato (Lycopersicon lycopersicum) grown in an industrially impacted biosolids-amended soil, a municipal biosolids-amended soil, and a control soil was measured. Bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) were calculated for the edible portions of both lettuce and tomato. Dry weight concentrations observed in lettuce grown in a soil amended (biosolids:soil dry weight ratio of 1:10) with PFAA industrially contaminated biosolids were up to 266 and 236 ng/g for perfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA) and perfluoropentanoic acid (PFPeA), respectively, and reached 56 and 211 ng/g for PFBA and PFPeA in tomato, respectively. BAFs for many PFAAs were well above unity, with PFBA having the highest BAF in lettuce (56.8) and PFPeA the highest in tomato (17.1). In addition, the BAFs for PFAAs in greenhouse lettuce decreased approximately 0.3 log units per CF<sub>2</sub> group. A limited-scale field study was conducted to verify greenhouse findings. The greatest accumulation was seen for PFBA and PFPeA in both field-grown lettuce and tomato; BAFs for PFBA were highest in both crops. PFAA levels measured in lettuce and tomato grown in field soil amended with only a single application of biosolids (at an agronomic rate for nitrogen) were predominantly below the limit of quantitation (LOQ). In addition, corn (Zea mays) stover, corn grains, and soil were collected from several full-scale biosolids-amended farm fields. At these fields, all PFAAs were below the LOQ in the corn grains and only trace amounts of PFBA and PFPeA were detected in the corn stover. This study confirms that the bioaccumulation of PFAAs from biosolids-amended soils depends strongly on PFAA concentrations, soil properties, the type of crop, and analyte

    Perfluoroalkyl Acid Distribution in Various Plant Compartments of Edible Crops Grown in Biosolids-Amended soils

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    Crop uptake of perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) from biosolids-amended soil has been identified as a potential pathway for PFAA entry into the terrestrial food chain. This study compared the uptake of PFAAs in greenhouse-grown radish (<i>Raphanus sativus</i>), celery (<i>Apium graveolens</i> var. <i>dulce</i>), tomato (<i>Lycopersicon lycopersicum</i>), and sugar snap pea (<i>Pisum sativum </i>var.<i> macrocarpon</i>) from an industrially impacted biosolids-amended soil, a municipal biosolids-amended soil, and a control soil. Individual concentrations of PFAAs, on a dry weight basis, in mature, edible portions of crops grown in soil amended with PFAA industrially impacted biosolids were highest for perfluorooctanoate (PFOA; 67 ng/g) in radish root, perfluorobutanoate (PFBA; 232 ng/g) in celery shoot, and PFBA (150 ng/g) in pea fruit. Comparatively, PFAA concentrations in edible compartments of crops grown in the municipal biosolids-amended soil and in the control soil were less than 25 ng/g. Bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) were calculated for the root, shoot, and fruit compartments (as applicable) of all crops grown in the industrially impacted soil. BAFs were highest for PFBA in the shoots of all crops, as well as in the fruit compartment of pea. Root-soil concentration factors (RCFs) for tomato and pea were independent of PFAA chain length, while radish and celery RCFs showed a slight decrease with increasing chain length. Shoot-soil concentration factors (SCFs) for all crops showed a decrease with increasing chain length (0.11 to 0.36 log decrease per CF<sub>2</sub> group). The biggest decrease (0.54–0.58 log decrease per CF<sub>2</sub> group) was seen in fruit-soil concentration factors (FCFs). Crop anatomy and PFAA properties were utilized to explain data trends. In general, fruit crops were found to accumulate fewer long-chain PFAAs than shoot or root crops presumably due to an increasing number of biological barriers as the contaminant is transported throughout the plant (roots to shoots to fruits). These data were incorporated into a preliminary conceptual framework for PFAA accumulation in edible crops. In addition, these data suggest that edible crops grown in soils conventionally amended for nutrients with biosolids (that are not impacted by PFAA industries) are unlikely a significant source of long-chain PFAA exposure to humans

    Expanded Target-Chemical Analysis Reveals Extensive Mixed-Organic-Contaminant Exposure in U.S. Streams

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    Surface water from 38 streams nationwide was assessed using 14 target-organic methods (719 compounds). Designed-bioactive anthropogenic contaminants (biocides, pharmaceuticals) comprised 57% of 406 organics detected at least once. The 10 most-frequently detected anthropogenic-organics included eight pesticides (desulfinylfipronil, AMPA, chlorpyrifos, dieldrin, metolachlor, atrazine, CIAT, glyphosate) and two pharmaceuticals (caffeine, metformin) with detection frequencies ranging 66–84% of all sites. Detected contaminant concentrations varied from less than 1 ng L<sup>–1</sup> to greater than 10 μg L<sup>–1</sup>, with 77 and 278 having median detected concentrations greater than 100 ng L<sup>–1</sup> and 10 ng L<sup>–1</sup>, respectively. Cumulative detections and concentrations ranged 4–161 compounds (median 70) and 8.5–102 847 ng L<sup>–1</sup>, respectively, and correlated significantly with wastewater discharge, watershed development, and toxic release inventory metrics. Log<sub>10</sub> concentrations of widely monitored HHCB, triclosan, and carbamazepine explained 71–82% of the variability in the total number of compounds detected (linear regression; <i>p</i>-values: < 0.001–0.012), providing a statistical inference tool for unmonitored contaminants. Due to multiple modes of action, high bioactivity, biorecalcitrance, and direct environment application (pesticides), designed-bioactive organics (median 41 per site at μg L<sup>–1</sup> cumulative concentrations) in developed watersheds present aquatic health concerns, given their acknowledged potential for sublethal effects to sensitive species and lifecycle stages at low ng L<sup>–1</sup>