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Phytoremediation of a sulphonated azo dye Green HE4B by Glandularia pulchella (Sweet) Tronc. (Moss Verbena)



The dyes and dye stuffs present in effluents released from textile dyeing industries are potentially mutagenic and carcinogenic. Phytoremediation technology can be used for remediating sites contaminated with such textile dyeing effluents. The purpose of the work was to explore the potential of Glandularia pulchella (Sweet) Tronc. to decolorize different textile dyes, textile dyeing effluent, and synthetic mixture of dyes.


Enzymatic analysis of the plant roots was performed before and after decolorization of dye Green HE4B. Analysis of the metabolites of Green HE4B degradation was done using UV–Vis spectroscopy, high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and gas chromatography–mass spectroscopy (GC-MS). The ability of the plant to decolorize and detoxify a textile dyeing effluent and a synthetic mixture of dyes was studied by a determination of the American Dye Manufacturer’s Institute (ADMI), biological oxygen demand (BOD), and chemical oxygen demand (COD). Phytotoxicity studies were performed.


Induction of the activities of lignin peroxidase, laccase, tyrosinase, and 2,6-dichlorophenol indophenol reductase was obtained, suggesting their involvement in the dye degradation. UV–Vis spectroscopy, HPLC, and FTIR analysis confirmed the degradation of the dye. Three metabolites of the dye degradation were identified, namely, 1-(4-methylphenyl)-2-{7-[(Z)-phenyldiazenyl] naphthalen-2-yl} diazene; 7,8-diamino-2-(phenyldiazenyl) naphthalen-1-ol; and (Z)-1,1′-naphthalene-2,7-diylbis (phenyldiazene) using GC-MS. ADMI, BOD, and COD values were reduced. The non-toxic nature of the metabolites of Green HE4B degradation was revealed by phytotoxicity studies.


This study explored the phytoremediation ability of G. pulchella (Sweet) Tronc. in degrading Green HE4B into non-toxic metabolites.

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A. N. Kabra, R. V. Khandare, and M. B. Kurade wish to thank the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), New Delhi, India, for providing Junior Research Fellowship.

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Correspondence to Sanjay P. Govindwar.

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Responsible editor: Elena Maestri

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Kabra, A.N., Khandare, R.V., Kurade, M.B. et al. Phytoremediation of a sulphonated azo dye Green HE4B by Glandularia pulchella (Sweet) Tronc. (Moss Verbena). Environ Sci Pollut Res 18, 1360–1373 (2011).

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  • Phytoremediation
  • Glandularia pulchella (Sweet) Tronc.
  • GreenHE4B
  • Decolorization
  • Textile dyeing effluent