Mechanism of Cu(II) and Cd(II) immobilization by extracellular polymeric substances (Escherichia coli) on variable charge soils.

Research paper by Jackson Nkoh JN Nkoh, Ren-Kou RK Xu, Jing J Yan, Jun J Jiang, Jiu-Yu JY Li, Muhammad Aqeel MA Kamran

Indexed on: 23 Jan '19Published on: 23 Jan '19Published in: Environmental Pollution


Extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) found in soils can reduce the mobility of heavy metals through the use of both electrostatic and non-electrostatic mechanisms. Their effects vary from one soil type to another. The influence of EPS from Escherichia coli on the adsorption behaviors of Cu(II) and Cd(II) by two bulk variable charge soils, Oxisol and Ultisol, was studied at constant and varied pH, and the results were compared to a constant charge Alfisol. The maximum adsorption capacities of the soils were significantly (P < 0.05) enhanced in the presence of EPS, with Cu(II) adsorption being greater. Interaction of EPS with soils made the soil surface charge more negative by neutralizing positive charges and shifting the zeta potentials in a negative direction: from -18.6 to -26.4 mV for Alfisol, +5.1 to -22.2 mV for Oxisol, and +0.3 to -28.0 mV for Ultisol at pH 5.0. The adsorption data fitted both the Freundlich and Langmuir isotherms well. Preadsorbed Cd(II) was more easily desorbed by KNO than preadsorbed Cu(II) from both the control and EPS treated soils. The adsorption of both metals was governed by electrostatic and non-electrostatic mechanisms, although more Cu(II) was adsorbed through the non-electrostatic mechanism. The information obtained in this study will improve our understanding of the mechanisms involved in reducing heavy metals mobility in variable charge soils and hence, their bioavailability. Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.