Trace element accumulation by moss and lichen exposed in bags in the city of Naples (Italy)

Adamo P., Giordano S., Vingiani S., Cobianchi R.C. & Violante P.
Environmental Pollution
122(1): 91-103
This paper presents the results of a bioaccumulation study of trace elements in the Naples urban area based on the use of the moss Sphagnum capillifolium (Ehrh.) Hedw. and the lichen Pseudevernia furfuracea (L.) Zopf exposed in bags in 23 sites. Moss and lichen bags were exposed for 4 months starting from the beginning of July 1999. Bags gathering was carried out after 10 weeks of exposure, at the end of the dry season, and after 17 weeks, during the wet season. The elements Al, As, Ca, Cd, Cr, Co, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Mo, Ni, Pb, Ti, V and Zn were analysed by inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry ICP–MS in both biomonitors. For the majority of the elements the total amounts found in S. capillifolium were higher than in P. furfuracea whether considering the whole period of exposure or the weekly uptake. It was observed that there was a much greater difference in metal accumulation by P. furfuracea between the dry and wet seasons compared with S. capillifolium. In the wet period, the lichen seems to accumulate a larger quantity of metals. With the exception of Mn, trace element concentrations did not appear to be significantly affected by the washing away of rainfall. K loss during exposure suggested cell membrane damage in both organisms. For P. furfuracea the K leakage was limited to the dry period of exposure. A clear distinction between “lithophilic” and “anthropogenic” elements was achieved by cluster analysis. Significant correlations were found among Fe–Cu–Cr–Ni, Pb–Cd–Co, V–Cr–Ni, Zn–Ni–Pb, suggesting a common source for each group of elements.
Monday, 22 June 2009 17:04