Environmental monitoring and assessment

Impact of PAH on biological health parameters of soils of an Indian refinery and adjoining agricultural area--a case study.

PMID 21505770


The present study is aimed at analysing and comparing different soil enzymes in soil samples of native contaminated sites of a Mathura refinery and adjoining agricultural land. Enzyme activities are considered as indicators of soil quality and changes in biogeochemical function due to management or perturbations. Soil samples were collected from the premises and nearby area of Mathura refinery, India. Biological health parameters (dehydrogenase, aryl esterase, aryl sulphatase, [Formula: see text]-glucosidase, alkaline phosphatase, acid phosphatase, lipase, laccase and catalase activity) were estimated in the soil samples. Among all the samples, sewage sludge soil showed maximum activity of enzymes, microbial biomass carbon and most probable number of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) degraders in soils spiked with three- to four-ring PAHs at 50 ppm. Available phosphorus, potassium and nitrogen was also exceptionally high in this sample, indicating maximum microbial bioconversion due to presence of nutrients stimulating potent PAH-degrading microorganisms.