Toxic cyanobacteria blooms are increasing in magnitude and frequency worldwide. However, this issue has not been adequately addressed in Malaysia. Therefore, this study aims to better understand eutrophication levels, cyanobacteria diversity, and microcystin concentrations in ten Malaysian freshwater lakes. The results revealed that most lakes were eutrophic, with total phosphorus and total chlorophyll-a concentrations ranging from 15 to 4270 µg L(-1) and 1.1 to 903.1 µg L(-1), respectively. Cyanobacteria were detected in all lakes, and identified as Microcystis spp., Planktothrix spp., Phormidium spp., Oscillatoria spp., and Lyngbya spp. Microcystis spp. was the most commonly observed and most abundant cyanobacteria recorded. Semi-quantitative microcystin analysis indicated the presence of microcystin in all lakes. These findings illustrate the potential health risk of cyanobacteria in Malaysia freshwater lakes, thus magnifying the importance of cyanobacteria monitoring and management in Malaysian waterways.
This study was undertaken to assess the levels of trace metals (As, Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn) in two common species of cockles (Anadara granosa and Anadara inaequivalvis) from two coastal areas in Thailand (Pattani Bay) and Malaysia (the Setiu Wetlands). A total of 350 cockles were collected in February and September 2014. Trace metals were determined by Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry. We observed that cockles in both areas had a higher accumulation of metals in September. Notably, the biota-sediment accumulation (BSAF) of Cd was highest in both areas. A strong positive correlation of Cd with the length of the cockles at Pattani Bay (r(2) = 0.597) and the Setiu Wetlands (r(2) = 0.675) was noted. It was suggested that As could be a limiting element (BSAF < 1) of cockles obtained from Pattani Bay. In comparison with the permissible limits set by the Thailand Ministry of Public Health and the Malaysia Food Regulations, mean values of As, Cd, Cu, Pb, and Zn were within acceptable limits, but the maximum values of Cd and Pb exceeded the limits for both areas. Regular monitoring of trace metals in cockles from both areas is suggested for more definitive contamination determination.
This study examined the concentration of heavy metals in 13 fish species. The results indicated that shellfish species (clams) have the highest metal concentrations, followed by demersal and pelagic fishes. The mean concentration of metals in clams are Zn 88.74 ± 11.98 µg/g, Cu 4.96 ± 1.06 µg/g, Pb 1.22 ± 0.19 µg/g, Cd 0.34 ± 0.04 µg/g dry wt. basis, whereas the same measure in fish tissues was 58.04 ± 18.51, 2.47 ± 1.21, 0.58 ± 0.27 and 0.17 ± 0.08 µg/g dry wt. basis. The concentrations of heavy metals in clams and fish tissues were still lower than the maximum allowable concentrations as suggested by the Malaysian Food Act (1983) and are considered safe for local human consumption.
This study determined the source contribution of PM2.5 (particulate matter <2.5 μm) in air at three locations on the Malaysian Peninsula. PM2.5 samples were collected using a high volume sampler equipped with quartz filters. Ion chromatography was used to determine the ionic composition of the samples and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry was used to determine the concentrations of heavy metals. Principal component analysis with multilinear regressions were used to identify the possible sources of PM2.5. The range of PM2.5 was between 10 ± 3 and 30 ± 7 µg m(-3). Sulfate (SO4 (2-)) was the major ionic compound detected and zinc was found to dominate the heavy metals. Source apportionment analysis revealed that motor vehicle and soil dust dominated the composition of PM2.5 in the urban area. Domestic waste combustion dominated in the suburban area, while biomass burning dominated in the rural area.
Immobilisation of heavy metals in a 30-year old active scrap metal yard soil using three waste materials, namely coconut tree sawdust (CTS), sugarcane bagasse (SB) and eggshell (ES) was investigated. The contaminated soil was amended with amendments at application rates of 0 %, 1 % and 3 % (w/w). The effects of amendments on metal accumulation in water spinach (Ipomoea aquatica) and soil metal bioavailability were studied in a pot experiment. All amendments increased biomass yield and reduced metal accumulation in the plant shoots. The bioconcentration factor and translocation factor values of the metals were in the order of Zn > Cu > Pb. The addition of ES, an alternative source of calcium carbonate (CaCO3), has significantly increased soil pH and resulted in marked reduction in soil metal bioavailability. Therefore, CTS, SB and ES are promising low-cost immobilising agents to restore metal contaminated land.
The mobility of (14)C-chlorpyrifos using soil TLC was investigated in this study. It was found that chlorpyrifos was not mobile in clay, clay loam and peat soil. The mobility of (14)C-chlorpyrifos and non-labelled chlorpyrifos was also tested with silica gel TLC using three types of developing solvent hexane (100%), hexane:ethyl acetate (95:5, v/v); and hexane:ethyl acetate (98:2, v/v). The study showed that both the (14)C-labelled and non-labelled chlorpyrifos have the same Retardation Factor (Rf) for different developing solvent systems. From the soil column study on mobility of chlorpyrifos, it was observed that no chlorpyrifos residue was found below 5 cm depth in three types of soil at simulation rainfall of 20, 50 and 100 mm. Therefore, the soil column and TLC studies have shown similar findings in the mobility of chlorpyrifos.
Urban environmental quality is vital to be investigated as the majority of people live in cities. However, given the continuous urbanization and industrialization in urban areas, heavy metals are continuously emitted into the terrestrial environment and pose a great threat to human. In this study, a total of 76 urban surface soil samples were collected in the Klang district (Malaysia), and analyzed for total and bioavailable heavy metal concentrations by inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry. Results showed that the concentrations of bioavailable heavy metals declined in the order of Al, Fe, Zn, Cu, Co, Cd, Pb, and Cr, and the concentrations of total heavy metals declined in the order of Fe, Al, Cu, Zn, Pb, Cr, Co, and Cd. Principal component analysis (PCA) showed that heavy metals could be grouped into three principal components, with PC1 containing Al and Fe, PC2 comprising Cd, Co, Cr, and Cu, and PC3 with only Zn. PCA results showed that PC1 may originate from natural sources, whereas PC2 and PC3 most likely originated from anthropogenic sources. Health risk assessment indicated that heavy metal contamination in the Klang district was below the acceptable threshold for carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic risks in adults, but above the acceptable threshold for carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic risks in children.
A study has been conducted to determine the composition of surfactants in runoff water in the semi-urban area of Bandar Baru Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia. Runoff samples were collected from five different locations with contrasting functional activities and the colorimetric method was used to analyze the concentrations of surfactants as methylene blue active substances (MBAS) for anionic surfactants and as disulphine blue active substances (DBAS) for cationic surfactants. The results showed that the highest surfactant concentrations of MBAS and DBAS in runoff water were recorded in the samples collected at the residential area, with the concentrations of 3.192 ± 0.727 and 0.170 ± 0.028 μmol/L, respectively. Anionic surfactants as MBAS were found to dominate the concentration of surfactants in both runoff and rainwater. The concentrations of both anionic and cationic surfactants in runoff water were recorded as being higher than in rainwater.
Metallothionein (MT) concentrations in gill and liver tissues of Oreochromis mossambicus were determined to assess biological response of fish to levels of some metals. Metal concentrations in gill and liver tissues of O. mossambicus ranged from 0.6 to 2.6 for Cd, 16 to 52 for Zn, 0.5 to 17 for Cu and 2 to 67 for T-Hg (all in μg/g wet weight, except for T-Hg in ng/g wet weight). Accumulation of Cd, Zn, Cu and Hg (μg/g wet weight) in the liver and gills of O. mossambicus were in the order of liver > gills. The concentrations of Cd, Zn, Cu and Hg in fish tissues were correlated with MT content. The increases in MT levels from the reference area Puchong Tengah compared to the polluted area Kampung Seri Kenangan were 3.4- and 3.8-fold for gills and livers, respectively. The results indicate that MT concentrations were tissue-specific, with the highest levels in the liver. Therefore, the liver can act as a tissue indicator in O. mossambicus in the study area.
A short-term investigation on the chemical composition of rainwater was carried out at five selected sampling stations in Kuantan district, Pahang, Malaysia. Sampling of rainwater was conducted by event basis between September and November 2011. Rainwater samples were collected using polyethylene containers and the parameters measured were cations (sodium, potassium, ammonium, calcium and magnesium) and anions (chlorides, nitrates and sulphates). The average pH value for rainwater samples was 6.0 ± 0.57 in which most of the sampling sites exhibited pH values >5.6. Calcium and sulphate were the most abundant cation and anion, respectively, whilst the concentrations of other major ions varied according to sampling location.
This study aims to determine the composition and sources of particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter of 10 μm or less (PM10) in a semi-urban area. PM10 samples were collected using a high volume sampler. Heavy metals (Fe, Zn, Pb, Mn, Cu, Cd and Ni) and cations (Na(+), K(+), Ca(2+) and Mg(2+)) were detected using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, while anions (SO4 (2-), NO3 (-), Cl(-) and F(-)) were analysed using Ion Chromatography. Principle component analysis and multiple linear regressions were used to identify the source apportionment of PM10. Results showed the average concentration of PM10 was 29.5 ± 5.1 μg/m(3). The heavy metals found were dominated by Fe, followed by Zn, Pb, Cu, Mn, Cd and Ni. Na(+) was the dominant cation, followed by Ca(2+), K(+) and Mg(2+), whereas SO4 (2-) was the dominant anion, followed by NO3 (-), Cl(-) and F(-). The main sources of PM10 were the Earth's crust/road dust, followed by vehicle emissions, industrial emissions/road activity, and construction/biomass burning.
Livers and muscles of swamp eels (Monopterus albus) were analyzed for bioaccumulation of heavy metals during the plowing stage of a paddy cycle. Results showed heavy metals were bioaccumulated more highly in liver than muscle. Zinc (Zn) was the highest bioaccumulated metal in liver (98.5 ± 8.95 μg/g) and in muscle (48.8 ± 7.17 μg/g). The lowest bioaccumulated metals were cadmium (Cd) in liver (3.44 ± 2.42 μg/g) and copper (Cu) in muscle (0.65 ± 0.20 μg/g). In sediments, Zn was present at the highest mean concentration (52.7 ± 2.85 μg/g), while Cd had the lowest mean concentration (1.04 ± 0.24 μg/g). The biota-sediment accumulation factor (BSAF) for Cu, Zn, Cd and nickel (Ni) in liver tissue was greater than the corresponding BSAF for muscle tissue. For the three plowing stages, metal concentrations were significantly correlated between liver and muscle tissues in all cases, and between sediment and either liver or muscle in most cases. Mean measured metal concentrations in muscle tissue were below the maximum permissible limits established by Malaysian and U.S. governmental agencies, and were therefore regarded as safe for human consumption.
Wilting, especially of the leaves, was observed as an initial symptom of arsenate [As(V)] to Ludwigia octovalvis (Jacq.) P. H. Raven. The plants tolerated As(V) levels of 39 mg kg⁻¹ for as long as 35 days of exposure. After 91 days, the maximum concentration of As uptake in the plant occurred at As(V) concentration of 65 mg kg⁻¹ while As concentration in the stems, roots and leaves were 6139.9 ± 829.5, 1284.5 ± 242.9 and 1126.1 ± 117.2 mg kg⁻¹, respectively. In conclusion, As(V) could cause toxic effects in L. octovalvis and the plants could uptake and accumulate As in plant tissues.
The distribution of total petrogenic hydrocarbon was investigated in the subsurface water of Setiu Wetland from July to October 2008. The concentration was quantified by UV-fluorescence spectroscopy and ranged from 4 to 121 μg/L (mean 60 ± 41 μg/L). Higher total petrogenic hydrocarbon concentrations were found in area with high boating activities suggesting that the contribution is likely related to fossil fuel combustion. The present study also revealed that the total petrogenic hydrocarbon values are still lower that those reported in Malaysian coastal waters.
The concentrations of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in soil samples were measured at five different sites within Klang Valley, Malaysia. The results showed that the total concentrations of the fourteen priority PAHs ranged from 64 to 155 μg/kg. Irrespective of the land use, all the measured soil PAH concentrations in this study were significantly lower than that found in soil samples in temperate regions. The profile of PAHs in the soils was dominated by the LMW PAHs. The PAHs in Klang Valley soils originated from pyrogenic sources, with a combination of petroleum and biomass combustion in vehicles, industries and non-point sources.
Phosphate and colloidal gas aphrons (CGAs) generated from saponin extracted from Sapindus mukorossi fruit, were evaluated for washing low levels of arsenic from an iron rich soil. Phosphate is one of the most commonly dispersed chemicals that increases arsenic mobility in soil due to their structural similarities, making it an important factor in arsenic removal process. Column washing experiments were performed with CGAs in down flow and up flow modes on soil of pH 5 and 6. Soapnut CGAs, when paired with phosphate removed up to 95 % arsenic while soapnut CGAs alone could only remove up to 70 % arsenic. The presence of phosphate improved efficiency of soapnut solution by up to 35 %. SEM image of washed soil revealed minor corrosion of soil surface while using phosphate with soapnut. Therefore, the addition of phosphates would have positive impact on soil washing using soapnut saponin.
Three different types of low cost soil amendments, namely, EDTA, elemental S and N-fertilizer, were investigated with Vetiver grass, Vetiveria zizanioides (Linn.) Nash growing under highly mixed Cd-Pb contamination conditions. A significant increase (p
This study analyzed the levels of cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), and zinc (Zn) by the flame atomic absorption spectrophotometer (FAAS), in the muscle tissues, exoskeletons, and gills from freshwater prawn (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) (n = 20) harvested from natural habitat in Kerang River, Malaysia on 25th November 2015. Significant increase of the metals level in muscle tissue and gill (r > 0.70, p