Bioremediation of Acid-Mine Drainage contaminated with acid and heavy metals in coal mine by Sulfate-Reducing Bacteria

B.G. Ma & Z.Q. Hu

in Legislation, Technology and Practice of Mine Land Reclamation

Results expected in sulfate-reducing environments include decreased concentrations of sulfate and heavy metals coupled with an increase in pH and alkalinity (1-4). The use of biological sulfate reduction to treat contaminated groundwater containing sulfate and dissolved heavy metals has been


With the development of the national economy, coal has become one of the main energy in China. Coal mining will bring negative effects to the local ecological environment in benefits also. Coal waste is the solid waste from coal mining and coal washing process and dark grey rocks associated with coal seam in coal forming process. Its carbon content is low, and it’s harder than coal. At present, 20% of coal mining quantity with coal waste discharged in China. The coal waste would be increased about 4 million tons every year all over the country, but it’s about 60 million tons in comprehensive utilization, and the rest of the nearest melange storage form of coal gangue (Pei Z.Y., et al., 2011).

Fungal Bioremediation

Fundamentals and Applications

By Araceli Tomasini CampocosioHector Hugo Leon Santiesteban

in Fungal Bioremediation

This book highlights the role fungi play in bioremediation, as well as the mechanisms and enzymes involved in this process. It covers the application of bioremediation with fungi in polluted sites and gives a wide overview of the main applications of remediation, such as degradation of xenobiotics, gaseous pollutants, and metal reduction. The book explains the degradation of emergent pollutants and radioactive compounds by fungi, which is relevant to the current pollution problems that have been studied over the last few decades. The book also describes the most advanced techniques and tools that are currently used in this field of study.

Intrinsic bioremediation of complex hydrocarbon mixtures: Novel mechanisms and geochemical consequences

Proceedings of the International Conference on Groundwater Research, Copenhagen, Denmark, 6-8 June 2000

Joseph M. Suflita

in Groundwater 2000

Soluble and solid phase geochemical profiles as well as microbiological rate experiments were used to evaluate the dominant terminal electron accepting processes occurring in an aquifer polluted by complex mixtures of hydrocarbons. Sulfate reduction and methanogenesis were identified as dominant processes influencing the biodegradation of aquifer contaminants. Sedimentary microorganisms were able to biodegrade complex hydrocarbon mixtures most readily under sulfate reducing conditions. Sulfate depletion could be correlated with the loss of distinct hydrocarbon components. Evidence for the anaerobic microbial destruction of whole oils, gas condensate, mono- and polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, as well as straight and branched chain alkanes could be obtained. Collectively, the anaerobic biodegradation patterns observed in our experiments help explain the in-situ hydrocarbon profiles measured in petroleum-contaminated sediments and help illustrate the importance of intrinsic remediation activity in governing the transport and fate of these materials in complex environments.

Microbes used as a tool for bioremediation of heavy metal from the environment

Published in Cogent Food & Agriculture

Molalign Medfu TarekegnFikirte Zewdu SalilihAlemitu Iniyehu Ishetu 

Heavy metal pollution poses a serious threat to all forms of life in the environment due to the toxic effects of long-term environmental pollution. These metals are extremely sensitive at low concentrations and can be stored in food webs, posing a serious public health risk. Different organic pollutants and metals are not degradable and remain in their environment for a long time. Remediation using conventional physical and chemical methods is uneconomical and produces large volumes of chemical waste. The balance of hazardous metals has shown a strong and growing interest over the years. The use of biosensor microorganisms is eco-friendly and cost-effective. Therefore, microorganisms have a variety of mechanisms of metal sequestration that hold greater metal biosorption capacities. Finally, we provide suggestion from microbial tools to remove, recover metals, and metalloids from solutions using living or dead biomass and their components.

Bioremediation through microbes: systems biology and metabolic engineering approach

Published in Critical Reviews in Biotechnology

Arun Kumar Dangi, Babita Sharma, Russell T. Hill, Pratyoosh Shukla

Today, environmental pollution is a serious problem, and bioremediation can play an important role in cleaning contaminated sites. Remediation strategies, such as chemical and physical approaches, are not enough to mitigate pollution problems because of the continuous generation of novel recalcitrant pollutants due to anthropogenic activities. Bioremediation using microbes is an eco-friendly and socially acceptable alternative to conventional remediation approaches. Many microbes with a bioremediation potential have been isolated and characterized but, in many cases, cannot completely degrade the targeted pollutant or are ineffective in situations with mixed wastes. This review envisages advances in systems biology (SB), which enables the analysis of microbial behavior at a community level under different environmental stresses. By applying a SB approach, crucial preliminary information can be obtained for metabolic engineering (ME) of microbes for their enhanced bioremediation capabilities. This review also highlights the integrated SB and ME tools and techniques for bioremediation purposes.

Mycoremediation (bioremediation with fungi) – growing mushrooms to clean the earth

Published in Chemical Speciation & Bioavailability

Christopher J. Rhodes

Some of the prospects of using fungi, principally white-rot fungi, for cleaning contaminated land are surveyed. That white-rot fungi are so effective in degrading a wide range of organic molecules is due to their release of extra-cellular lignin-modifying enzymes, with a low substrate-specificity, so they can act upon various molecules that are broadly similar to lignin. The enzymes present in the system employed for degrading lignin include lignin-peroxidase (LiP), manganese peroxidase (MnP), various H2O2 producing enzymes and laccase. The degradation can be augmented by adding carbon sources such as sawdust, straw and corn cob at polluted sites.

Field-scale bioremediation of arsenic-contaminated groundwater using sulfate-reducing bacteria and biogenic pyrite

Published in Bioremediation Journal

Ming-Kuo LeeJames A. SaundersTheodore Wilson

This research demonstrates that biogenic pyrite formed by stimulation of indigenous sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) in a natural aquifer can remove dissolved arsenic from contaminated groundwater under strongly reducing conditions. SRB metabolism led to the precipitation of biogenic pyrite nanoparticles capable of sorbing and co-precipitating arsenic. The field site is an industrial site where shallow groundwater in an unconfined sandy aquifer is contaminated by arsenic. Therefore, biodegradable organic carbon, ferrous iron, sulfate, and fertilizer were injected into groundwater and SRB metabolism began about 1 week later. Microscopic, X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence, and electron microprobe analyses confirm the bio-mineralization of pyrite and over time, pyrite nanoparticles grew to form well-formed crystals (1–10 µm in diameter) or spherical aggregates that contain 0.05–0.4 wt. % arsenic, indicative of their capacity to sequester arsenic. Consequently, dissolved arsenic decreased from its initial concentration of 0.3–0.5 mg/L to below the regulatory clean-up standard for the site of 0.05 mg/L in three downgradient wells in a matter of weeks after injection. The main sequestration stage, with total arsenic removal rates greater than 90%, lasted for at least 6 months until the arrival and mixing of untreated groundwater from upgradient. Treated groundwater with most active bacterial sulfate reduction became enriched in heavy 34S (range from 2.02 to 4.00 ‰) compared to unaffected well water (0.40–0.61 ‰). One to three orders of magnitude increases in SRB cells were observed in treated wells for at least 2 months after injection. For a full-scale remediation, the injection of solution should start at positions hydrologically upgradient from the major plume and proceed downgradient. If needed, aquifers may be repeatedly amended with biodegradable organic carbon to reestablish the reducing conditions that favor arsenic sequestration.