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Crit Rev Environ Sci Technol. 2012 Oct;42(20):2113-2152. Epub 2012 Oct 9.

Phytoextraction of Cd-Contaminated Soils: Current Status and Future Challenges.

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State Key Laboratory of Biocontrol and Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Plant Resource, School of Life Sciences, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, P. R. China.


Cadmium (Cd) is one of the most toxic and widely distributed pollutants in the environment. Cadmium contamination of soils has posed a serious threat to safe food production in many parts of the world. The authors present a comprehensive review of present status of phytoextraction technology for cleaning up Cd-contaminated soils, based primarily on the data resulting from both laboratory and field-scale studies that have been conducted to assess or improve the Cd phytoextraction potential of various plant species in the past decade. The encouraging results of field-scale studies have provided a fundamental basis to usher phytoextraction technology into practical use to remediate slightly to moderately Cd-contaminated soils in Europe and Asia, although this technology is not yet ready for widespread application. Chelators and microorganisms tested so far seem not to contribute to the applicability of Cd phytoextraction. The major challenges for the large-scale application of Cd phytoextraction are (a) how to further improve the efficiency of Cd phytoextraction, (b) how to cut the overall costs of Cd phytoextraction, and (c) how to get greater stakeholders' acceptance of Cd phytoextraction as a reliable option.

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