Effects of soil pH on the Vicia-micronucleus genotoxicity assay

Abstract : In the field of contaminated sites and soil management, chemical analyses only bring typological data about pollution. As far as bioavailability and effects on organisms are concerned, we need ecotoxicology tools. In this domain, among many existing tests, we chose to study genotoxicity because it is a short-term endpoint with long-term consequences. The aim of this study is to assess the effects of soil pH on the results of the Vicia faba root tip micronucleus test for the two following reasons: (i) to define the pH range within which the test can be performed without modifying the soil to be tested, within the framework of the ISO standard of the test and (ii) to provides information about the effects of the pH on the genotoxic potential of soils. In this context, we modified the pH of a standard soil with HCl or NaOH and we spiked the matrix with copper (2, 4 and 8 mmol kg(-1) dry soil) or with maleic hydrazide, an antigerminative chemical (5, 10 and 20 μmol kg(-1) dry soil). We concluded that the pH had no effect on the mitotic index or micronucleus frequency in the root cells of the negative controls: extreme pH values did not induce micronucleus formation in root cells. Moreover, according to our results, the Vicia-micronucleus test can be performed with pH values ranging between 3.2 and 9.0, but in the ISO 29200 "Soil quality--assessment of genotoxic effects on higher plants--V. faba micronucleus test" we recommended to use a control soil with a pH value ranging between 5 and 8 for a more accurate assessment of chemical genotoxicity. We also found that acid pH could increase the genotoxic potential of pollutants, especially heavy metals. With hydrazide maleic spiked soil, plants were placed in a situation of double stress, i.e. toxicity caused by extreme pH values and toxicity induced by the pollutant.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, April 24, 2018 - 3:17:12 PM
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Adrien Dhyèvre, Anne Sophie Foltête, Delphine Aran, Serge Muller, Sylvie Cotelle. Effects of soil pH on the Vicia-micronucleus genotoxicity assay. Mutation Research - Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis, Elsevier, 2014, 774, pp.17 - 21. ⟨10.1016/j.mrgentox.2014.09.004⟩. ⟨hal-01775331⟩

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