Effects of Cd2+ and Pb2+ on Growth and Photosynthesis of Two Freshwater Algae Species
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Collaborative Innovation Center of Recovery and Reconstruction of Degraded Ecosystem in Wanjiang Basin Co-founded by Anhui Province and Ministry of Education, School of Ecology and Environment, Anhui Normal University, Wuhu 241000, P. R. China
College of Life and Environment Sciences, Huangshan University, Huangshan 245041, P. R. China
Submission date: 2021-08-06
Final revision date: 2021-09-30
Acceptance date: 2021-10-21
Online publication date: 2022-02-17
Publication date: 2022-04-06
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2022;31(3):2059-2068
Microalgae are biological indicators of heavy metal pollution. Cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) are extremely toxic metals to aquatic organisms. In the present study, single and combined toxicity of Cd2+ and Pb2+ to Scenedesmus acutus and Schroederia sp. collected from the famous Xin’an River (Huangshan City) were evaluated. Treatments with 0.5-2.0 mg/L Cd2+ significantly reduced S. acutus population growth, and treatment with 2.0 mg/L Cd2+ significantly decreased Schroederia sp. population growth rate, suggesting a higher tolerance of Schroederia sp. than S. acutus to Cd2+ pollution. In addition, Cd2+ treatments significantly decreased chlorophyll a, carotene contents, and photosynthetic fluorescent parameters rETRmax and Ik, demonstrating that the harms on photosynthesis might be the underlying mechanism of Cd2+ toxicity to algae. Treatments with 5.0-15.0 mg/L Pb2+ did not significantly affected population growth and photosynthetic pigment content. However, combined exposure to Cd2+ and Pb2+ revealed antagonistic effects on both species. Overall, these results provide basic information to the ecological risk assessments of heavy metal pollution in the Xin’an River Basin.
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