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Title of the item:

Evaluation of Mercury Transformation and Benthic Organisms Uptake in a Creek Sediment of Pearl River Estuary, China

Title :
Evaluation of Mercury Transformation and Benthic Organisms Uptake in a Creek Sediment of Pearl River Estuary, China
Authors :
Long Chen
Feng Li
Wenrou Huang
Zhi Li
Mingguang Chen
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Subject Terms :
sulfate-reducing bacteria
acid-volatile sulfide
Pearl River estuary
estuarine sediment
Hydraulic engineering
Water supply for domestic and industrial purposes
Source :
Water, Vol 11, Iss 6, p 1308 (2019)
Publisher :
MDPI AG, 2019.
Publication Year :
Collection :
LCC:Hydraulic engineering
LCC:Water supply for domestic and industrial purposes
Document Type :
File Description :
electronic resource
Language :
Relation :;
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Accession Number :
Academic Journal
A large fraction of mercury contaminant in the environment is from industrial production, and it potentially impairs human health once entering the food chain. Millions of people reside in the Pearl River Delta region, and water quality in the estuary directly affects their drinking water safety. Considering the highly intense anthropogenic activities and industrial productions, we attempted to measure the sediment mercury concentration in the Pearl River estuary. In this work, samples of a creek sediment within this region were collected and mercury concentrations were quantified. Total mercury, simultaneously extracted mercury, methylmercury, and bio-accumulated mercury were individually assayed. Results indicated that total mercury concentrations of investigated sites ranged from 1.073 to 4.450 µg/g dry sediment. The mercury in the sediment also transformed into more toxic methylmercury, which then adversely affected benthos biodiversity. Correlation analysis revealed that, mercury was accumulated into benthic microorganisms, mainly through the uptake of methylmercury. High concentrations of acid-volatile sulfide in the sediment indicated the presence of active sulfate-reducing bacteria, which could also catalytically transform inorganic mercury into methylmercury. Correlation analysis further showed that sulfate-reducing bacteria activity accounted for methylmercury formation.

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