Send to

Choose Destination
J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2018;81(20):1058-1065. doi: 10.1080/15287394.2018.1528572. Epub 2018 Oct 10.

Ecotoxicological risk assessment of contaminated soil from a complex of ceramic industries using earthworm Eisenia fetida.

Author information

a Department of Environmental Health , Federal University of Uberlândia , Minas Gerais , Brazil.
b Institute of Biotechnology , Federal University of Uberlândia , Minas Gerais , Brazil.


The aim of this study was to determine ecotoxicological parameters for biomonitoring of environmental risk of native soils from a ceramic industrial area that had been contaminated with cadmium (Cd) and chromium (Cr) by using the earthworm, Eisenia fetida. Initially, lab tests were conducted to compare earthworm (Eisenia fetida) growth, survival, morphology, behavior, and reproduction rates following exposure to six concentrations of contaminated soil at 0%, 6.25%, 12.5%, 25%, 50%, or 100% mixed in artificial soil and cow dung following a 28-d incubation period. The second experiment consisted of utilizing Eisenia fetida in a predetermined lowest observed effect concentration to measure heavy metals bioaccumulation from superficial soil collected from a ceramic industrial area following a 56-d exposure. Data demonstrated that in the lab earthworms maintained at 6.25% of contaminated soil, exhibited significant increase in mean weight, bioaccumulation of Cd and Cr associated with a significant decrease in the amount of Cd and Cr in the soil. At field testing, similar results that were observed as in the lab as evidenced by rise in mean weight, higher levels of Cd and Cr in the earthworm tissue accompanied by significant fall in soil levels of Cd and Cr. In conclusion, at tested relevant environmental concentrations, the use of Eisenia fetida for assessing ecotoxicological risk arising from contaminated soil due to ceramic industrial pollutant emissions was found to be an effective tool for biomonitoring program.


Bioaccumulation; Biomonitoring; Eisenia fetida; Heavy metals; Risk Assessment

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center