Ecotoxicological characterization of tannery wastewater in Dhaka, Bangladesh

C. R. Arias-Barreiro, H. Nishizak, Kenji Okubo, I. Aoyama, I. C. Mori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Tanning industries are one of tne main economic activities in Bangladesh. It has been well documented that wastewater discharged from tanneries without appropriate treatment results in detrimental effects on the ecosystem. No ecotoxicity evaluation of any aquatic environment in Bangladesh has been conducted so far. In this study, a battery of toxicity bioassays and chemical analysis were carried out from water samples obtained from three sampling points: upstream from discharging site on River Buriganga (S 1), raw wastewater effluent (S2), and downstream the discharging sluice gate (S3), In the Hazaribagh tannery area of Dhaka City, Bangladesh. While S1 and S3 water samples did not show significant toxicity in the bioassays tested, S2 exhibited high acute toxicity to the bacterium Vibrio fischeri (15-min Microtox®test, EC50 =9.8%), the higher plant Lactuca sativa (5-day root elongation inhibition test, EC10 = 14.2%), and the microcrustacean Daphnia magna (24-hour mobility test, ECx = 31.5%). The results suggested that the raw wastewater effluent had detrimental effects on broad spectrum of organisms In the aquatic ecosystem and bacterium was the most sensitive. The chemical analysis revealed that sample S2 contained an extremely high concentration of chromium (47 g l-1). Additionally, microbiological analysis Indicated that the sampling area is impacted by fecal pollution, increasing the environmental health risk for its inhabitants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471-475
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Environmental Biology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2010


  • Buriganga river
  • Chromium tanning
  • Ecotoxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Toxicology
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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