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Earthworms to improve glyphosate degradation in biobeds

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Abstract

In this work, earthworm effect on the efficiency of biobeds for glyphosate degradation was studied. Three biomixtures with and without the addition of earthworms (Eisenia fetida species) were evaluated. The initial concentration of glyphosate was 1000 mg/kg biomixture. Glyphosate and biological parameters were measured as a function of time. Earthworm survival, biomass, and reproduction were evaluated as well. All biomixtures that contain earthworms reached 90% of glyphosate degradation at 90 days in comparison with the biomixtures without earthworms that reached 80% approximately at the same time. Also, within the biomixtures that contained earthworms, glyphosate degradation rate was significantly higher in the one made up with soil and wheat stubble (Ws-E) showing excellent capacity for aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) degradation, the main metabolite of glyphosate degradation. In addition, a study performed after the vermiremediation process showed that E. fetida can tolerate high glyphosate concentration without modifications in its life traits. It can be concluded that the use of E. fetida within the biobeds is an excellent combination to improve glyphosate and AMPA removal.

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Acknowledgments

We thank Ing. Matías Caillat from the Cooperativa Mixta Ltda (Margarita, Santa Fe, Argentina) for providing the materials used in this work.

Funding

This work was financed by CONICET, ANPCyT, SECTeI, and UNL.

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Correspondence to Cristina S. Zalazar.

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Responsible editor: Chris Lowe

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Lescano, M.R., Masin, C.E., Rodríguez, A.R. et al. Earthworms to improve glyphosate degradation in biobeds. Environ Sci Pollut Res 27, 27023–27031 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-09002-w

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