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Arsenic and rice: monitoring and studies of bioremediation for food safety

Grant number: 15/06674-9
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2015
Effective date (End): May 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Pharmacy - Toxicological Analysis
Principal Investigator:Bruno Lemos Batista
Grantee:Fabiana Roberta Segura
Home Institution: Centro de Ciências Naturais e Humanas (CCNH). Universidade Federal do ABC (UFABC). Ministério da Educação (Brasil). Santo André , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:14/05151-0 - Arsenic and rice: monitoring and (bio)remediation studies for food safety, AP.JP
Associated scholarship(s):18/02281-0 - Arsenic methylation and biovolatilization in soils from Ticino, Jura and Valais, Switzerland, BE.EP.DD


Arsenic (As) is considered the most toxic xenobiotic according to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry in the United States. Concerning the chemical species present in nature, inorganic As (As3+ and As5+) are the most toxic to humans and the methylated forms are less toxic (MMA - monomethyl As -, DMA - dimethyl As - and AsB - arsenobetaine) . When present in the soil, they are absorbed by the rice roots, reaching the grain. This cereal is an important food of Brazilians and almost half the world's population, therefore, a relevant route of exposure. One the one hand, the plant has mechanisms that favor the absorption of As by roots, especially As3+ when cultivated under flooded conditions. On the other hand, also has defense mechanisms such as phytochelatins and efflux of As. It is known that the rice consumed in Brazil has an average concentration of > 222 ng g-1 which about 60 % is inorganic, representing a risk to health when compared to the maximum tolerable value of 10 µg l-1 in potable water. The main producing states are Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina, which uses the cultivation at flooded conditions. Furthermore, there is currently an intense discussion among participants of the Codex Alimentarius about the maximum levels of As in rice, as well as methods of speciation and practices to mitigate this contamination. Therefore, this project aims to develop methods of chemical speciation, risk assessment of the consumption of rice and its derivatives regarding As contamination, to investigate Brazilian cultivars in relation their predilection for As, development of method for trapping volatile As for evaluation of their presence in soils of rice paddies and, finally, to study mitigation through polishing, cooking and (bio)remediation using fungi isolated from the rhizosphere of Brazilian rice. Through this project we hope to evaluate the risk of rice consumption, to reduce the As contamination in the grains aggregating nutritional value and create human resources to work on chemical analysis and food safety. (AU)

Scientific publications (5)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
SEGURA, FABIANA ROBERTA; FRANCO, DANIEL FERNANDEZ; CENTENO DA SILVA, JULIO JOSE; BATISTA, BRUNO LEMOS. Variations in total As and As species in rice indicate the need for crop-tracking. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, v. 86, MAR 2020. Web of Science Citations: 0.
SOARES GUIMARAES, LEANDRO HENRIQUE; SEGURA, FABIANA ROBERTA; TONANI, LUDMILLA; VON-ZESKA-KRESS, MARCIA REGINA; RODRIGUES, JAIRO LISBOA; CALIXTO, LEANDRO AUGUSTO; SILVA, FABIO FERREIRA; BATISTA, BRUNO LEMOS. Arsenic volatilization by Aspergillus sp. and Penicillium sp. isolated from rice rhizosphere as a promising eco-safe tool for arsenic mitigation. Journal of Environmental Management, v. 237, p. 170-179, MAY 1 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
PEDRON, TATIANA; SEGURA, FABIANA ROBERTA; PANIZ, FERNANDA POLIO; SOUZ, FELIPE DE MOURA; DOS SANTOS, MAURO COELHO; DE MAGALHAES JUNIOR, ARIANO MARTINS; BATISTA, BRUNO LEMOS. Mitigation of arsenic in rice grains by polishing and washing: Evidencing the benefit and the cost. JOURNAL OF CEREAL SCIENCE, v. 87, p. 52-58, MAY 2019. Web of Science Citations: 0.
SEGURA, FABIANA ROBERTA; CAVALHEIRO PAULELLI, ANA CAROLINA; LEITE BRAGA, GILBERTO UBIDA; PEDREIRA FILHO, WALTER DOS REIS; SILVA, FABIO FERREIRA; BATISTA, BRUNO LEMOS. Promising filamentous native fungi isolated from paddy soils for arsenic mitigation in rice grains cultivated under flooded conditions. JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICAL ENGINEERING, v. 6, n. 4, p. 3926-3932, AUG 2018. Web of Science Citations: 1.
SEGURA, FABIANA ROBERTA; DE OLIVEIRA SOUZA, JULIANA MARIA; DE PAULA, ELOISA SILVA; MARTINS, JR., AIRTON DA CUNHA; CAVALHEIRO PAULELLI, ANA CAROLINA; BARBOSA, JR., FERNANDO; BATISTA, BRUNO LEMOS. Arsenic speciation in Brazilian rice grains organically and traditionally cultivated: Is there any difference in arsenic content?. Food Research International, v. 89, n. 1, p. 169-176, NOV 2016. Web of Science Citations: 12.

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