Toxic Effects Promoted by a Commercial Detergent on the Germination and Initial Development of Cucumber Seedlings (Cucumis sativus L.)
Keywords:Plant bioassays, Water contamination, Ecotoxicology, Surfactants
Detergent is a significant pollutant that poses serious risks to natural ecosystems. Its components can penetrate soil and bodies of water from various sources, negatively impacting fauna and flora and causing eutrophication, foam formation, as well as altering important parameters such as temperature, salinity, turbidity, and pH. In view of the above, the aim of this study was to evaluate the toxic potential of a commercial detergent using cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) as a model organism. Four concentrations (1, 2, 4, and 8 g L-1) were evaluated, and the toxicity test was carried out according to ISO 18763 standards with minor modifications. The parameters evaluated were: percentage of germination, germination speed index, root length, and shoot length of seedlings. The test results showed that the detergent had no toxic effects on seed germination percentage. However, all concentrations affected the germination speed index. Regarding root length, this parameter was affected from the concentration of 2 g L-1, with this concentration promoting an 11.26% reduction compared to the control. Shoot length was affected by all concentrations, being the most affected parameter by the different concentrations, as revealed by the calculation of the toxicity index. The mean inhibitory concentration (IC50) that reduced root length by 50% was 3.03 g L-1, while for shoot length, it was 1.56 g L-1. These results suggest that the excessive use or improper disposal of commercial detergents can have negative effects on living organisms, highlighting the importance of control and regulation measures to mitigate the environmental risks associated with their use.
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