Fractionation and biotoxicity of heavy metals in urban dusts collected from Hong Kong and London

W. H. Wang, Ming Hung WONG*, S. Leharne, B. Fisher

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)


Samples of urban dusts, road site dusts and car park dusts, were collected at two selected sites each in Hong Kong and London. Sequential extraction was used to characterise the chemical compositions of these urban dusts. Copper, lead, zinc, pH, electrical conductivity and organic content were measured. Biotoxicity tests of urban dusts were conducted on higher plants (Brassica chinensis and Lolium perenne), a dinoflagellate green alga (Dunaliella tertiolecta) and luminescent bacteria (Photobacterium phosphoreum). A significant correlation was found between total lead (r = -0.70, p < 0.01) and zinc (r = -0.74, p < 0.05), and the 20min - EC50 using P. phosphoreum. In addition, there was a significant correlation (r = -0.72, p < 0.01) between the exchangeable lead content in dust and the 48 h-EC30 using D. tertiolecta. No specific trend was obtained for higher plants. Total lead and zinc contents were higher in dusts from London while the percentage of exchangeable fraction of metal contents was higher in those from Hong Kong.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-198
Number of pages14
JournalEnvironmental Geochemistry and Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1998

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Geochemistry and Petrology

User-Defined Keywords

  • Bioassay tests
  • Chemical characterisation
  • Cu
  • Pb
  • Sequential extraction
  • Street dust
  • Zn


Dive into the research topics of 'Fractionation and biotoxicity of heavy metals in urban dusts collected from Hong Kong and London'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this