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Biodegradation

, Volume 18, Issue 6, pp 675–692 | Cite as

A biogeochemical framework for metal detoxification in sulfidic systems

  • Alex O. Schwarz
  • Bruce E. Rittmann
Original Paper

Abstract

We develop a comprehensive biogeochemical framework for understanding and quantitatively evaluating metals bio-protection in sulfidic microbial systems. We implement the biogeochemical framework in CCBATCH by expanding its chemical equilibrium and biological sub-models for surface complexation and the formation of soluble and solid products, respectively. We apply the expanded CCBATCH to understand the relative importance of the various key ligands of sulfidic systems in Zn detoxification. Our biogeochemical analysis emphasizes the relative importance of sulfide over other microbial products in Zn detoxification, because the sulfide yield is an order of magnitude higher than that of other microbial products, while its reactivity toward metals also is highest. In particular, metal-titration simulations using the expanded CCBATCH in a batch mode illustrate how sulfide detoxifies Zn, controlling its speciation as long as total sulfide is greater than added Zn. Only in the absence of sulfide does complexation of Zn to biogenic organic ligands play a role in detoxification. Our biogeochemical analysis conveys fundamental insight on the potential of the key ligands of sulfidic systems to effect Zn detoxification. Sulfide stands out for its reactivity and prevalence in sulfidic systems.

Keywords

Biogeochemical model Bio-protection Metal speciation Metal detoxification Sulfidic systems Toxic metals 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Civil EngineeringUniversity of ConcepciónConcepciónChile
  2. 2.Center for Environmental BiotechnologyBiodesign Institute at Arizona State UniversityTempeUSA
  3. 3.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringNorthwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA

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