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Assessing Lead Thresholds for Phytotoxicity and Potential Dietary Toxicity in Selected Vegetable Crops


Lead tolerance and accumulation in shoots and edible parts varied with crop species and soil type. The critical Pb concentrations at 10% yield reduction were 24.71, 28.25, and 0.567 mg kg−1 for pakchoi, celery, and hot pepper, respectively under hydroponic conditions, whereas were 13.1, 3.83, 0.734 mg kg−1 grown in the Inceptisol and 31.7, 30.0, 0.854 mg kg−1 in the Alluvial soil, respectively. Based on the threshold of human dietary toxicity for Pb, the critical levels of soil available Pb for pakchoi, celery, and hot pepper were 5.07, 8.06, and 0.48 mg kg−1 for the Inceptisol, and 1.38, 1.47, and 0.162 mg kg−1 for the Alluvial soil, respectively. Similarly, the total soil Pb thresholds were different from vegetable species and soil types.

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This study was financed by the Key project (#2006AA06Z386) and National Key Basic Research and Development Program (#2002CB410804) from Ministry of Science of China.

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Correspondence to X. E. Yang.

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Hong, C.L., Jia, Y.B., Yang, X.E. et al. Assessing Lead Thresholds for Phytotoxicity and Potential Dietary Toxicity in Selected Vegetable Crops. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 80, 356–361 (2008).

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  • Genotypic difference
  • Human dietary toxicity
  • Lead
  • Toxic threshold