Environmental science & technology

Triolein embedded cellulose acetate membrane as a tool to evaluate sequestration of PAHs in lake sediment core at large temporal scale.

PMID 22372719


Although numerous studies have addressed sequestration of hydrophobic organic compounds (HOCs) in laboratory, little attention has been paid to its evaluation method in field at large temporal scale. A biomimetic tool, triolein embedded cellulose acetate membrane (TECAM), was therefore tested to evaluate sequestration of six PAHs with various hydrophobicity in a well-dated sediment core sampled from Nanyi Lake, China. Properties of sediment organic matter (OM) varying with aging time dominated the sequestration of PAHs in the sediment core. TECAM-sediment accumulation factors (MSAFs) of the PAHs declined with aging time, and significantly correlated with the corresponding biota-sediment accumulation factors (BSAFs) for gastropod (Bellamya aeruginosa) simultaneously incubated in the same sediment slices. Sequestration rates of the PAHs in the sediment core evaluated by TECAM were much lower than those obtained from laboratory study. The relationship between relative availability for TECAM (MSAF(t)/MSAF(0)) and aging time followed the first order exponential decay model. MSAF(t)/MSAF(0) was well-related to the minor changes of the properties of OM varying with aging time. Compared with chemical extraction, sequestration reflected by TECAM was much closer to that by B. aeruginosa. In contrast to B. aeruginosa, TECAM could avoid metabolism and the influences from feeding and other behaviors of organisms, and it is much easier to deploy and ready in laboratory. Hence TECAM provides an effective and convenient way to study sequestration of PAHs and probably other HOCs in field at large temporal scale.

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