Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine (Dec 2017)

Effects of heavy metal Cd pollution on microbial activities in soil

  • Weilin Shi,
  • Xiying Ma

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 24, no. 4
pp. 722 – 725


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Heavy metal contamination of soil occurs when heavy metals are introduced to soil through human activities, leading to the gradual deterioration of the ecology and environment. Microorganism activity reflects the intensity of various biochemical reactions in soil, and changes in it reflect the level of heavy metal pollution affecting the soil. The effects were studied of heavy metal Cd on the microbial activity of soil at different concentrations by investigating the respiratory intensity, urease activity, and catalase activity in forest soil and garden soil. The results showed that the respiratory intensity, urease and catalase activities in the garden soil were all higher than in the forest soil. Cd has obvious inhibitory effects on microbial activities. The three parameters exhibited a downward trend with increasing concentrations of Cd. Catalase activity increased when the mass concentration of Cd reached 1.0 mg/kg, indicating that low concentrations of Cd can promote the activity of some microorganisms. Respiratory intensity and urease activity also increased when the concentration reached 10.0 mg/kg, showing that respiratory intensity and urease activity have strong response mechanisms to adverse conditions. The effective state of Cd in soil, as well as inhibition of microbial activity, decreased with incubation time.