Committee Chair

Richards, Sean M.

Committee Member

Boyd, Jennifer N.; Craddock, J. Hill


Dept. of Biological and Environmental Sciences


College of Arts and Sciences


University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Place of Publication

Chattanooga (Tenn.)


Arsenic (As) is a global toxicant that negatively impacts human health. Roxarsone (ROX) is an organoarsenical administered to poultry to control internal parasites. ROX is excreted from poultry unchanged and the waste may be used for vegetable fertilizer. This experiment was conducted with beets (Beta vulgaris) by adding 0, 1, 10, and 100 mg/kg As (T1, T2, T3, and T4 respectively, with ROX, presented as As concentrations) to a growing medium prepared with topsoil and other ingredients in a greenhouse pot experiment. The study aimed to determine effects of As-contaminated soils on biomass production, uptake of As by beets, and allocation of As to tissues. Results showed that biomass production of beets was negatively correlated with As concentrations in the growing medium (r = -0.3286, p < 0.0001). As uptake by beets was positively correlated with As concentrations in the growing medium (roots, rs= 0.7577, p < 0.0001; shoots, rs = 0.8406, p < 0.0001). As uptake by beets was observed with median values in the roots of 0.267 ± 0.004 mg/kg, 0.271 ± 0.001 mg/kg, 0.271 ± 0.289 mg/kg, and 3.76 ± 1.92 mg/kg for T 1 , T 2 , T 3 , and T 4 respectively ; the shoots took up 0.259 ± 0.006 mg/kg, 0. 263 ± 0.313 mg/kg, 0.271 ± 0.373 mg/kg, and 3.94 ± 0.72 mg/kg for the respective treatments. Beets took up 4.3 ± 2.3% of available As and distributed it equally into tissues. The results suggest that As could be transferred to humans through the food chain via beet consumption.


M. S.; A thesis submitted to the faculty of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Science.




Arsenic -- Environmental aspects; Vegetables -- Effect of arsenic on; Beets -- Analysis


Environmental Sciences

Document Type

Masters theses


xii, 43 leaves




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