Table of Contents
Advances in Biology
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 8065736, 10 pages
Research Article

Evaluation of the Phytotoxic and Genotoxic Potential of Pulp and Paper Mill Effluent Using Vigna radiata and Allium cepa

1Environmental Microbiology Laboratory, Environmental Toxicology Group, CSIR-Indian Institute of Toxicology Research (CSIR-IITR), Vishvigyan Bhavan 31, Mahatma Gandhi Marg, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh 226001, India
2Department of Biosciences, Integral University, Bas-ha Kursi Road, Dashauli, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh 226026, India
3Department of Environmental Microbiology, Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University (A Central University), Vidya Vihar, Raebareli Road, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh 226025, India

Received 22 April 2016; Accepted 11 August 2016

Academic Editor: Antimo Di Maro

Copyright © 2016 Izharul Haq et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Pulp and paper mill effluent induced phytotoxicity and genotoxicity in mung bean (Vigna radiata L.) and root tip cells of onion (Allium cepa L.) were investigated. Physicochemical characteristics such as electrical conductivity (EC), biological oxygen demand (BOD5), chemical oxygen demand (COD), and total phenols of the pulp and paper mill effluent were beyond the permissible limit specified for the discharge of effluent in inland water bodies. Compared to control plants, seedling exposed to 100% effluent concentration showed a reduction in root and shoot length and biomass by 65%, 67%, and 84%, respectively, after 5 days of treatment. A. cepa root tip cells exposed to effluent concentrations ranging from 25 to 100% v/v showed a significant decrease in mitotic index (MI) from 32 to 11% with respect to control root tip cells (69%) indicating effluent induced cytotoxicity. Further, the effluent induced DNA damage as evidenced by the presence of various chromosomal aberrations like stickiness, chromosome loss, anaphase bridge, c-mitosis, tripolar anaphase, vagrant chromosome, and telophase bridge and micronucleated and binucleated cell in A. cepa. Findings of the present study indicate that pulp and paper mill effluents may act as genotoxic and phytotoxic agents in plant model system.