Toxicity comparison of three imidazolium bromide ionic liquids to soil microorganisms.

Environ Pollut 2019 Oct 5;255(Pt 2):113321. Epub 2019 Oct 5.

College of Resources and Environment, Key Laboratory of Agriculture Environment in Universities of Shandong, National Engineering Laboratory for Efficient Utilization of Soil and Fertilizer Resources, Shandong Agricultural University, Taian, 271018, Shandong Province, China. Electronic address:

Ionic liquids (ILs) are extensively used in several chemistry fields. And research about the effects of ILs on soil microbes is needed. In this study, brown soil was exposed to 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium bromide ([Cmim]Br), 1-hexyl-3-methylimidazolium bromide ([Cmim]Br) and 1-decyl-3-methylimidazolium bromide ([Cmim]Br). The toxicities of the three ILs are evaluated by measuring the soil culturable microbial number, enzyme activity, microbial diversity and, abundance of the ammonia monooxygenase (amoA) genes of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA). Results showed that all tested ILs caused a decrease in culturable microbial abundance. Tested ILs exposure inhibit urease activity and promote acid phosphatase and β-glucosidase activities. Tested ILs reduced soil microbial diversity and the abundances of AOB-amoA and AOA-amoA genes significantly. After a comparison of the integrated biomarker response (IBR) index, the toxicities of tested ILs to soil microorganisms were as follows: [Cmim]Br > [Cmim]Br > [Cmim]Br. Among all collected biomarkers, the abundance of the AOA-amoA gene was the most sensitive one and was easily affected after ILs exposure.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2019.113321DOI Listing
October 2019

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