Uptake and transformation of ciprofloxacin by vetiver grass (Chrysopogon zizanioides)

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Ciprofloxacin (CIP) is a synthetically produced and widely prescribed antibiotic. Due to incomplete metabolism and gut absorption, a significant portion of the consumed CIP is excreted and released into the environment through wastewater. Vetiver grass has been reported to tolerate many organic and inorganic pollutants. Our objectives were to evaluate the potential of vetiver grass to remove CIP from aquatic media with the ultimate goal of developing a plant-based method for wastewater treatment. We also examined the potential degradation/transformation of CIP in the plant and the metabolic pathways impacted by CIP. Results show that vetiver grass removed more than 80% CIP within 30 days. Ciprofloxacin elicited a stress response by inducing antioxidant enzymes, and metabolic profiling indicated an impact on key metabolic pathways. Transformation products of CIP in vetiver tissue indicate the potential role of root-associated microorganisms as well as plant metabolism in CIP degradation.

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© 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Publisher’s version of record: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ibiod.2019.05.023

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International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation