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Issue 1, 2006
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Biological monitoring of ozone: the twenty-year Italian experience

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Tropospheric ozone is a growing environmental menace in Italy and in the whole Mediterranean basin. The importance of active biomonitoring of this pollutant with hypersensitive Bel-W3 tobacco plants is stressed, and several examples of field studies carried out in Italy with this technique are presented. Current limitations are discussed, with special emphasis on data quality assessment and the opportunity of adopting easy-to-use kits based on tobacco germlings instead of adult plants. A standardization of methodologies (from cultivation to scoring and data elaboration), also at an international level, is strongly felt to be needed, in order to get official acknowledgement of biomonitoring procedures. Potential educational implications, with the active involvement of students and environmentalists, are shown. Other biological indicators are used, namely sensitive and resistant white clover (Trifolium repens) clones (as descriptors of biomass reduction in crops species) and Centaurea jacea (brown knapweed) as a model species to evaluate the relationship between ozone exposure and effects on the performance and injury symptoms of native plants which are largely used in the framework of European programmes.

Graphical abstract: Biological monitoring of ozone: the twenty-year Italian experience

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Publication details

The article was received on 19 Jul 2005, accepted on 02 Nov 2005 and first published on 24 Nov 2005

Article type: Critical Review
DOI: 10.1039/B510303G
Citation: J. Environ. Monit., 2006,8, 25-32
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    Biological monitoring of ozone: the twenty-year Italian experience

    C. Nali, A. Francini and G. Lorenzini, J. Environ. Monit., 2006, 8, 25
    DOI: 10.1039/B510303G

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