This study was designed to evaluate selected physiological responses of Salvinia minima to copper (Cu2 ) concentrations of 0.06 (control), 1.0, 2.0, 2.5, and 3.0 mg l−1. The plants were grown under laboratory conditions of 25 ± 2°C, a light intensity of 120 μmol m−2 s−1, and a 14-h photoperiod. After seven days of exposure to the Cu, Salvinia growth decreased gradually with an increase in Cu concentration resulting in a significant decline at 3.0 mg l−1Cu. Similar results were obtained after 14 days of exposure. However, calculating growth using fresh weight showed a significant decline at 2.5 and 3.0 mg l−1. After 14 days exposure, CO2 assimilation decreased as the Cu concentration increased in the growth media. This decrease in CO2 assimilation coincided with a similar decrease in photosynthetic pigments. Uptake of Cu significantly increased with the increase of Cu concentration in the growth media. This study demonstrated the potential of Salvinia to remediate Cu in concentrations 100 times what is currently found in freshwater environments.
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