Levels of some toxic elements and frequency of bacterial heavy metal resistance in sediment and sea water

Altug G. , Balkis N.

ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT, vol.149, pp.61-69, 2009 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 149
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10661-008-0183-z
  • Page Numbers: pp.61-69


The Golden Horn Estuary located in the Istanbul region of Turkey has been thought to be a heavily polluted area since the 1950s: the concentration of the elements, which include heavy metals such as Cu(2+), Mn(2+), Ni(2+), Zn(2+), Pb(2+), Cd(2+), and Fe(2+), was therefore investigated in sediment and water samples of the area. The resistance of Enterobacteriaceae members to some heavy metal salts was investigated to determine levels of metal-resistant bacteria in the Golden Horn Estuary after the environmental restoration project in 1998. The sediment samples were collected with an Ekman-Grab in the period from November 2002 to February 2004 from depths of 4-15 m and analyzed by means of an atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Analyses of average heavy metals of sediment samples yielded the following results: 131.5 ppm Cu, 405.5 ppm Mn, 46.5 ppm Ni, 191.2 ppm Zn, 81.5 ppm Pb and 27668 ppm Fe. As with water, Ni concentrations in sediment were found lower than that in limit values. Frequency of heavy metals resistance to Cu, Zn, Fe, Ni, Mn, Pb and Cd was detected as an average of 65.0%, 64.4%, 62.5%, 38.4%, 37.3%, 36.2% and 28.4%, respectively in a total of 192 strains isolated from sediment samples. It was observed that there was no statistically significant difference among the results of analyses with respect to sampling dates. Despite the environmental restoration project in 1998, our study results showed that heavy metal levels were still high in the sediment and this situation induced the tolerance of bacteria to some heavy metals.