Soil contamination with toxic heavy metals (HMs) poses a serious threat to global food safety, soil ecosystem and human health. The rapid industrialization, urbanization and extensive application of agrochemicals on arable land have led to paddy soil pollution worldwide. Rice plants easily accumulate toxic HMs from contaminated agricultural soils, which ultimately accumulated in grains and enters the food chain. Although, physical and chemical remediation techniques have been used for the treatment of HMs-contaminated soils, however, they also have many drawbacks, such as toxicity, capital investment and environmental-associated hazards. Recently, engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) have gained substantial attention owing to their promising environmental remediation applications. Numerous studies have revealed the use of ENMs for reclamation of toxic HMs from contaminated environment. This review mainly focuses on HMs toxicity in paddy soils along with potential health risks to humans. It also provides a critical outlook on the recent advances and future perspectives of nanoremediation strategies. Additionally, we will also propose the interacting mechanism of HMs-ENMs to counteract metal-associated phytotoxicities in rice plants to achieve global food security and environmental safety.
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