Applications in Phytoremediation
Phytoremediation is a bioremediation technique utilized to detoxify and decontaminate soils (refer to United States Environmental Protection Agency), which is cost-effective and represents an excellent technique that positively impacts soil ecology.
Phytoremediation relies on using plants, which modify the chemical, physical and biological properties in the rhizosphere, which positively contributes to the degradation of contaminants in the rhizosphere.
Plants can contain, stabilize
and/or absorb metal contaminants by acting as filters or traps. Plants also
contribute to the degradation of organic contaminants, such as petroleum and
its derivatives, by releasing specific oxidative enzymes. These plant processes
are significantly enhanced by the presence of rhizosphere microflora, for example,
and bacteria in the rhizosphere can degrade organic contaminants such as petroleum
Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are symbiotic microorganisms that enhance plant growth, nutrition, and improve plant tolerance to abiotic stress such as heavy metals toxicity. In addition, AMF may positively influence the populations of beneficial bacteria in the rhizophere. These bacterial populations are able to increase the degradation of organic contaminants.