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A major environmental concern due to dispersal of industrial and urban
wastes generated by human activities is the contamination of soil. The release
of heavy metals into the terrestrial ecosystem is a major problem. Accumulation
of heavy metals in environment and particularly in soil is a serious
environmental concern, as the accumulated heavy metal ions can find their way
into living organisms via contamination of ground water or food chain. This
praxis urgently requires and demands governmental regulations in India. Two
samples of sludge were collected from Banthar Industrial Pollution Control
Company (BIPCC), UP State Industrial Development Corporation (UPSIDC), Leather
Technology Park, Banthar, Unnao, India. In the present study, the phytoremediation
potential of Catharanthus roseus, a
valued medicinal plant, with respect to chromium has been analyzed. C.
roseus was shown to absorb up to about 38% of the amount of Cr present in
primary and secondary sludge amended soil through roots and accumulate it to
about 22% in leaves. Effect of chromium concentration on the status of
antioxidant enzyme peroxidase (POD) and detoxification enzyme
glutathione-S-transferase (GST) from C.
roseus leaves was also observed and determined. Increased expressions of
POD and GST were observed on native PAGE under stress conditions as compared to
control. C. roseus can well tolerate low amounts of chromium (and accumulate
it to about 22% in leaves) and can, thus, prove useful in the reclamation and
remediation of chromium contaminated soil and land.