Accumulation of heavy metals by wild edible mushrooms with respect to soil substrates in the Athens metropolitan area (Greece).


Agricultural University of Athens, Laboratory of General and Agricultural Microbiology, Iera Odos 75, 11855 Athens, Greece. Electronic address: [Email]


Six wild edible mushroom species, Agaricus bisporus, A. bitorquis, A. gennadii, Coprinus comatus, Psathyrella candolleana and Volvopluteus gloiocephalus, were collected from the Greater Athens area (Greece), together with their soil substrates (two depth-layers) for studying bioaccumulation of heavy metals in a densely populated urban environment. Total and bioavailable Cr, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn concentrations in soils were assessed along with their respective concentrations in mushrooms, and were evaluated in conjunction with soil properties, including K, P and Na content, CaCO3 equivalent percentage, mechanical composition, pH and organic matter. In particular, Cu, Pb, Zn and Ni displayed a high variability in their total and bioavailable concentrations measured in the upper soil layer. Relatively high Pb and Ni contents were measured in mushrooms, while Cu, Zn, Fe and Mn concentrations varied considerably. No significant correlations were detected between total concentrations of heavy metals in soils and mushrooms, whereas bioavailable fractions for several metals were significantly correlated with their respective content in A. bisporus, C. comatus, P. candolleana and V. gloiocephalus. K, Na and P concentrations in soils were associated to the content of several metals in fruit-bodies. The effect of soil texture on metals accumulation by mushrooms was species-dependent since high correlations were found for V. gloiocephalus and C. comatus only. Interactions between metals content in fruit-bodies seem to be species-specific except for Ni vs. Fe and Mn vs. Fe, which are positively correlated in all cases. Overaccumulation of metals in fruit-bodies was established only in respect to the bioavailable fractions of Cu, Mn, Zn and Ni in soil. The levels of toxicity for Pb were exceeded in mushrooms of five species, whereas the rest of the heavy metals (with the exception of Cu) were detected at lower contents than their recommended dietary allowances or tolerable upper intake levels.


Available metal concentration,Bioaccumulation,Fungi,Metal toxicity,Soil properties,Urban foraging,

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