Effects of Heavy Metals on Soil Enzyme Activities

  • Ayten KaracaEmail author
  • Sema Camci Cetin
  • Oguz Can Turgay
  • Ridvan Kizilkaya
Part of the Soil Biology book series (SOILBIOL, volume 19)


The pollution of the soil with heavy metals is one of the worst legacies of our intensive agricultural–industrial activities, and it negatively affects various characteristics of the soil, including soil enzyme activities. Soil enzymes are natural molecules that catalyze soil microbial reactions and mainly originate from microorganisms and plants. Since enzyme activities play fundamental roles in soil chemical and biological reactions, their inhibition by heavy metals has received considerable attention and has been well documented by many researchers over the last few decades. The activities of soil enzymes have often been proposed as sensitive indicators of important microbial reactions involved in nutrient cycles and they respond to changes in the soil caused by natural or anthropogenic factors. In this regard, soil enzyme activities are often used to evaluate the impact of human activity on soil life. The purpose of this chapter is thus to emphasis some facts, hypotheses, and probabilities, as well as the results of research into the relationships between soil enzymes and heavy metals.


Heavy Metal Humic Acid Acid Phosphatase Fulvic Acid Urease Activity 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Ayten Karaca
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sema Camci Cetin
    • 2
  • Oguz Can Turgay
    • 1
  • Ridvan Kizilkaya
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Soil ScienceAnkara UniversityAnkaraTurkey
  2. 2.Department of Soil ScienceGaziosmanpasa UniversityTokatTurkey
  3. 3.Department of Soil ScienceOndokuzmayis UniversitySamsunTurkey

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