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Environmental fate and impacts of organic pollutants

Over 12000 t of pesticides are applied to agricultural land each year in the UK. The extent to which pesticides are susceptible to leaching from soil to contaminate surface and groundwater depends on their susceptibility to sorption by soil organic matter and the rate of degradation of the compound in the soil profile. Interests include the identification of organisms contributing to pesticide degradation in soil and the relationships between degradative gene diversity and pesticide degradation rates. Additional work focuses on the impacts of pesticides on soil microbial community structure and functioning. Further work focuses on the degradation of 'down the drain' chemicals in the environment, particularly the role of microbial diversity and water chemistry in determining biodegradation rates and pathways in rivers

Dr Oliver Price, Dr Roger van Egmond and Dr Chris Finnegan, Unilever
Dr Sam Marshall, Dr Laurence Hand and Dr Robin Oliver, Syngenta
Dr Hendrik Schafer, University of Warwick School of Life Sciences
Prof Ian Guymer, Dr Jonty Pearson, University of Warwick School of Engineering

Pollutant fate Publications
Semple, K.T., Riding, M., McAllister L., Sopena, F., Bending G.D. (2013) Impact of black carbon on the bioaccessibility of organic contaminants in soil. Journal of Hazardous Materials (in press)

Sopena, F., Bending, G.D. (2013) Impacts of biochar on bioavailability of the fungicide azoxystrobin: a comparison of the effect on biodegradation rate and toxicity to the fungus community. Chemosphere 91, 1525-1533.

Sopeňa, F., Semple, K., Sohi, S., Bending, G.D. (2012) Assessing the chemical and biological accessibility of Isoproturon in soil amended with biochar. Chemosphere 88, 77-83.

Rodriguez-Cruz, M.S., Baelum, J, Shaw, L., Sørensen, S.R., Shi, S., Aspray, T., Jacobsen, C.S., Bending, G.D. (2010) Biodegradation of the herbicide mecoprop-p with soil depth and its relationship with tfdA gene copy number and diversity. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 42, 32-39.

Rodriguez-Cruz, M.S., Jones, J.E., Bending, G.D. (2008) Spatial variability in the biodegradation rate of the herbicide bentazone with soil depth assessed using contrasting incubation methods. Chemosphere 73, 1211-1215.

Bending, G.D., Rodriguez-Cruz, M.S., Lincoln, S.D. (2007) Fungicide impacts on microbial communities in soils with contrasting management histories. Chemosphere 69, 82-88.

Shi, S., Bending, G.D. (2007) Changes to the structure of Sphingomonas spp. communities associated with biodegradation of the herbicide isoproturon in soil. FEMS Microbiology Letters 216, 110-116.

Bending, G.D., Rodríguez-Cruz, M.S. (2007) Microbial aspects of the interaction between soil depth and biodegradation of the herbicide isoproturon. Chemosphere 66, 664-671.

Rodriguez-Cruz, M.S., Jones, J.E., Bending, G.D. (2006) Field-scale study of the variability in pesticide biodegradation with soil depth and its relationship with soil characteristics. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 38, 2910-2918.

Bending, G.D., Lincoln, S.D., Edmondson R.N. (2006) Spatial variation in the degradation rate of the pesticides isoproturon, azoxystrobin and diflufenican in soil and its relationship with chemical and microbial properties. Environmental Pollution 139, 279-287.

Bending, G.D., Lincoln, S.D., Sorensen, S.R., Morgan, J.A.W., Aamand, J. & Walker, A. (2003) In-field variability in the degradation rate of the phenyl-urea herbicide isoproturon is the result of interactions between degradative Sphingomonas spp. and soil pH. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 69, 827-834.

Sørensen, S.R., Bending, G.D., Jacobsen, C.S., Walker, A. & Aamand, J. (2003) Degradation processes for isoproturon and related phenylurea herbicides in agricultural soils. FEMS Microbiology Ecology 45, 1-11.

Bending, G.D., Friloux, M. & Walker, A. (2002) Degradation of contrasting pesticides by white rot fungi and its relationship with ligninolytic potential. FEMS Microbiology Letters 212, 59-63.

Walker, A., Jurado-Exposito, M., Bending, G.D. & Smith, V.J.R. (2001) Spatial variability in the degradation rate of isoproturon in soil Environmental Pollution 111, 417-427.

Field sampling