2022(4)      October - December, 2022

Halophyte quinoa: a potential hyperaccumulator of heavy metals for phytoremediation

Muhammad Ghous1, Shahid Iqbal1,2*, Muhammad Amir Bakhtavar1,2, Fahim Nawaz1, Tanveer ul Haq3,Shahbaz Khan4

1Department of Agronomy, MNS University of Agriculture, Multan, Pakistan

2Institute of Plant Breeding and Biotechnology MNS-University of Agriculture Multan.

3Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, MNS University of Agriculture, Multan, Pakistan

4National Agricultural Research Centre, Islamabad-45500, Pakistan


Agricultural soils are becoming contaminated with heavy metals due to industrialization and increase in anthropogenic activities. Phytoremediation of heavy metals is an environment-friendly technique for reclamation contaminated soils. Quinoa is halophyte with excellent nutritional qualities and can also be used for the reclamation of polluted soil. This study was executed to evaluate the phytoextraction potential of heavy metals in older and younger leaves of quinoa. Six genotypes of quinoa were cultivated on artificially heavy metals polluted soil in controlled block with use of sewage wastewater at MNS University of Agriculture Multan, Pakistan. Leaves samples were analyzed to evaluate the concentration of cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), copper (Cu), and nickel (Ni) by using atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Maximum amount of heavy metals were accumulated in older leaves Q-76, Q50 and Q-82 but Q-76 genotype was higher accumulator. In case of yield, Q-7 and Q-76 were best performers with maximum seed yield, biomass, main panicle length and width. It can be concluded that Q-76 genotype was best among the six for producing higher yield with better extraction of heavy metals (Cd, Pb, Cu and Ni) from polluted soil.


Keywords: Heavy metals, Phytoextraction, Quinoa, Reclamation

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