Algae as a Potential Bioremediation Tool for Atrazine Contamination
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Atrazine is a commonly used herbicide in the United States and the potential risks of use are drawing the attention of scientists. In order to reduce exposure and risk to humans and other larger organisms, algae is being researched to prevent the spread of atrazine through naturally occurring causeways. Because of its high chlorophyll-a content, algae has been shown to be able to absorb atrazine without significant reductions in its growth rate. If algae species could absorb atrazine and then be removed from the system, there is potential for it to be an effective remediator for atrazine. In this study, three algae species: Chlorella vulgaris, Cylindrospermum raciborskii, and Microcystis aeruginosa were used to determine if their biovolume and chlorophyll α properties were influenced by atrazine’s photosynthetic blocking ability to alter their growth rates. Using Repeated Measures ANOVA it was determined that in the experiment conducted that atrazine did not significantly influence the growth rate of the three algae species when compared to each other, suggesting that it has potential for use as a bioremediator.