Toxicity of biosolids-derived triclosan and triclocarban to six crop species
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Biosolids are an important source of nutrients and organic matter, which are necessary for the productive cultivation of crop plants. Biosolids have been found to contain the personal care products triclosan and triclocarban at high concentrations relative to other pharmaceuticals and personal care products. The present study investigates whether exposure of 6 plant species (radish, carrot, soybean, lettuce, spring wheat, and corn) to triclosan or triclocarban derived from biosolids has an adverse effect on seed emergence and/or plant growth parameters. Plants were grown in soil amended with biosolids at a realistic agronomic rate. Biosolids were spiked with triclosan or triclocarban to produce increasing environmentally relevant exposures. The concentration of triclosan and triclocarban in biosolids-amended soil declined by up to 97% and 57%, respectively, over the course of the experiments. Amendment with biosolids had a positive effect on the majority of growth parameters in radish, carrot, soybean, lettuce, and wheat plants. No consistent triclosan- or triclocarban-dependent trends in seed emergence and plant growth parameters were observed in 5 of 6 plant species. A significant negative trend in shoot mass was observed for lettuce plants exposed to increasing concentrations of triclocarban (p<0.001). If best management practices are followed for biosolids amendment, triclosan and triclocarban pose a negligible risk to seed emergence and growth of crop plants.
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