A major environmental concern due to dispersal of industrial and urban wastes generated by human activities is the contamination of soil. The release of heavy metals into the terrestrial ecosystem is a major problem. Accumulation of heavy metals in environment and particularly in soil is a serious environmental concern, as the accumulated heavy metal ions can find their way into living organisms via contamination of ground water or food chain. This praxis urgently requires and demands governmental regulations in India. Two samples of sludge were collected from Banthar Industrial Pollution Control Company (BIPCC), UP State Industrial Development Corporation (UPSIDC), Leather Technology Park, Banthar, Unnao, India. In the present study, the phytoremediation potential of Catharanthus roseus, a valued medicinal plant, with respect to chromium has been analyzed. C. roseus was shown to absorb up to about 38% of the amount of Cr present in primary and secondary sludge amended soil through roots and accumulate it to about 22% in leaves. Effect of chromium concentration on the status of antioxidant enzyme peroxidase (POD) and detoxification enzyme glutathione-S-transferase (GST) from C. roseus leaves was also observed and determined. Increased expressions of POD and GST were observed on native PAGE under stress conditions as compared to control. C. roseus can well tolerate low amounts of chromium (and accumulate it to about 22% in leaves) and can, thus, prove useful in the reclamation and remediation of chromium contaminated soil and land.
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