Antibiotics can be absorbed by aquatic plants, but they seriously affect the health of aquatic plants and threaten the steady state of the aquatic ecosystem. The phytoremediation performance and physiology of floating macrophyte (Eichhornia crassipes) under antibiotic ciprofloxacin (CIP) hydroponic conditions were investigated.

It was found that CIP absorption of E. crassipes was up to 84.38% and the root was the main absorption tissue. Hydrolysis and microbial degradation were the second removal pathway of CIP followed the plant absorption. After 7 days of CIP exposure, the photosynthesis efficiency of E. crassipes remained stable, and the presence of CIP did not inhibit the growth of the plant.

On the 14th day, the superoxide dismutase and catalase activities were increased in response to the CIP stress. However, the tender leaves of E. crassipes turned white and shriveled, attributed to a decrease in chlorophyll content and chlorophyll fluorescence parameters after 21 days of CIP exposure. These findings will have significant implications for E. crassipes to absorb CIP on a limited time scale and provide a phytoremediation technology for antibiotics in water.

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Deng, Yang & Qian, Xiyi & Wu, Yiting & Ma, Tian & Xiaoguang, Xu & Li, Jiayi & Wang, Guoxiang & Yan, Yan. (2022). Effects of ciprofloxacin on Eichhornia crassipes phytoremediation performance and physiology under hydroponic conditions. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. 29. 10.1007/s11356-022-19008-1.