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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(12), 15782-15793; doi:10.3390/ijerph121215021

Transfer Rates of 238U and 232Th for E. globulus, A. mearnsii, H. filipendula and Hazardous Effects of the Usage of Medicinal Plants From Around Gold Mine Dump Environs

Centre for Applied Radiation Science and Technology, North West University, Mafikeng 2735, South Africa
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Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Received: 2 November 2015 / Revised: 27 November 2015 / Accepted: 7 December 2015 / Published: 10 December 2015
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Abstract

Medicinal plant consumption can be a source of human exposure to radioactive elements such as 238U and 232Th, which can lead to internal radiation doses. The uptake of 238U and 232Th from soils to the leaf samples of three different medicinal plant species (Eucalyptus globulus, Acacia mearnsii and Hyparrhenia filipendula) from the purlieu of the Princess gold mine dump, an abandoned contaminated tailings storage site (TSS), located at longitude 27°55′00″E and latitude 26°09′30″S in Davidsonville (Roodepoort, west of Johannesburg, South Africa) was measured. This was done using ICP-MS spectrometry and substantial differences were observed in the soil-plant transfer factor (TF) values between these radionuclides. The plant species E. globulus exhibited the highest uptake of 238U, with an average TF of 3.97, while that of H. filipendula was 0.01 and the lowest TF of 0.15 × 10−2 was measured for A. mearnsii. However, in the case of 232Th, the highest average TF was observed for A. mearnsii (0.29), followed by E. globulus (0.10) and lowest was measured for H. filipendula (0.27 × 10−2). The ratio of TF average value i.e., 238U to 232Th in the soil-plant leaves was 38.05 for E. globulus, 0.01 for A. mearnsii and 4.38 for H. filipendula. View Full-Text
Keywords: transfer factor; uranium; thorium; tailings storage site; contaminated soil transfer factor; uranium; thorium; tailings storage site; contaminated soil
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Tshivhase, V.M.; Njinga, R.L.; Mathuthu, M.; Dlamini, T.C. Transfer Rates of 238U and 232Th for E. globulus, A. mearnsii, H. filipendula and Hazardous Effects of the Usage of Medicinal Plants From Around Gold Mine Dump Environs. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12, 15782-15793.

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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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