Impact of basidiomycete fungi on the wettability of soil contaminated with a hydrophobic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon

Paul D. Hallett*, Nia A. White, Karl Ritz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) present a challenge to bioremediation because they are hydrophobic, thus influencing the water availability and repellency of soil. The addition of different concentrations of the PAIL anthracene, showed it to induce moderate levels of repellency. We investigated the efficacy of three basidiomycete fungal species on improving the wettability of soil by reducing repellency caused by contamination of soil with 7 ppm anthracene. A microcosm system was used that enabled determination of the impact of fungi on wettability at three locations down a 30 mm deep repacked soil core. Before incubation with fungi, the contaminated soil had a repellency of R = 3.12 +/- 0.08 (s.e.). After 28 days incubation, Coriolus versicolor caused a significant reduction in repellency to R = 1.79 +/- 0.35 (P <0.001) for the top section of the soil in a microcosm. Phanerochaete chrysosporium and Phlebia radiata did not influence repellency. None of the fungi had an effect at 20 mm depth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S334-S338
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 2006
EventBIOHYDROLOGY 2006 International Conference - Prague, Czech Republic
Duration: 20 Sep 200622 Sep 2006


  • polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon
  • fungi
  • hydrophobicity
  • bioremediation
  • soil

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