American Chemical Society
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Dependence of Biotic and Abiotic H2O2 and •OH Production on the Redox Conditions and Compositions of Sediment during Oxygenation

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journal contribution
posted on 2024-02-13, 18:35 authored by Na Zhang, Ying Liu, Zhenchen Wan, Yanting Zhang, Wenjing Xie, Peng Zhang, Man Tong, Songhu Yuan
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in O2-perturbed subsurface environments has been increasingly documented in recent years. However, the constraining conditions under which abiotic and/or biotic mechanisms predominate for ROS production remain ambiguous. Here, we demonstrate that the ROS production mechanism, biotic and abiotic, is determined by sediment redox properties and sediment compositions. Upon the oxygenation of 10 field sediments, the cumulative H2O2 concentrations reached up to 554 μmol/kg within 2 h. The autoclaving sterilization experiments showed that H2O2 could be produced by both biotic and abiotic processes depending on the redox conditions. However, only the abiotic process could produce significant levels of •OH, and the production yield was closely related to the sediment components, particularly sediment Fe­(II) and organic matter. Fe­(II) bound with organic matter led to high yields of H2O2 and •OH production. Sediment oxygenation contributed to the appearance of H2O2 in groundwater, with the abiotic mechanism producing higher instantaneous H2O2 concentrations than the biotic mechanism. These findings reveal that the redox conditions, compositions, and texture of sediments collectively control abiotic and biotic mechanisms for ROS production, which assists the identification of ROS production hotspots and the understanding of ROS distribution and utilization in the subsurface.