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Physiological and chemical response of lichens transplanted in and around an industrial area of south Italy: relationship with the lichen diversity



Physiological and chemical response of lichens transplanted in and around an industrial area of south Italy: relationship with the lichen diversity



Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety 74(4): 650-657



The lichen Evernia prunastri (L.) Ach. has been exposed for 3 months in and around an industrial area of Mediterranean Italy for monitoring physiological (photosynthetic efficiency, membrane lipids peroxidation and cell membrane integrity) and chemical (bioaccumulation of the heavy metals Cr, Ni, Pb, V and Zn) effects and investigate the consistency with the environmental quality status depicted by the diversity of epiphytic lichens (index of lichen diversity (ILD)). The results showed that thalli transplanted close to the industrial area exhibited early stress symptoms, as revealed by the increase in electrical conductivity indicating a damage endured by lichen cell membranes. The electrical conductivity was inversely correlated with the diversity of epiphytic lichens recorded at the same sites. The ILD negatively correlated also with membrane lipid peroxidation and the rate of accumulation of Pb, V and Zn. Reciprocal correlations found among trace elements pinpointed vehicular traffic and metal processing in the industrial area as main sources. The damage endured by cell membranes was the best physiological indicator consistent with the air quality status depicted by the diversity of epiphytic lichens.

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Accession: 055001040

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 21251715

DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoenv.2010.10.011


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