Effect of biochar amendment on the control of soil sulfonamides, antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and gene enrichment in lettuce tissues.J Hazard Mater. 2016 May 15; 309:219-27.JH
Considering the potential threat of vegetables growing in antibiotic-polluted soil with high abundance of antibiotic-resistant genes (ARGs) against human health through the food chain, it is thus urgent to develop novel control technology to ensure vegetable safety. In the present work, pot experiments were conducted in lettuce cultivation to assess the impedance effect of biochar amendment on soil sulfonamides (SAs), antibiotic-resistant bacteria (ARB), and ARG enrichment in lettuce tissues. After 100 days of cultivation, lettuce cultivation with biochar amendment exhibited the greatest soil SA dissipation as well as the significant improvement of lettuce growth indices, with residual soil SAs mainly existing as the tightly bound fraction. Moreover, the SA contents in roots and new/old leaves were reduced by one to two orders of magnitude compared to those without biochar amendment. In addition, isolate counts for SA-resistant bacterial endophytes in old leaves and sul gene abundances in roots and old leaves also decreased significantly after biochar application. However, neither SA resistant bacteria nor sul genes were detected in new leaves. It was the first study to demonstrate that biochar amendment can be a practical strategy to protect lettuce safety growing in SA-polluted soil with rich ARB and ARGs.