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Arsenite oxidizing multiple metal resistant bacteria isolated from industrial effluent: their potential use in wastewater treatment

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Arsenite oxidizing bacteria, isolated from industrial wastewater, showed high resistance against arsenite (40 mM) and other heavy metals (10 mM Pb; 8 mM Cd; 6 mM Cr; 10 mM Cu and 26.6 mM As5+). Bacterial isolates were characterized, on the basis of morphological, biochemical and 16S rRNA ribotyping, as Bacillus cereus (1.1S) and Acinetobacter junii (1.3S). The optimum temperature and pH for the growth of both strains were found to be 37 °C and 7. Both the strains showed maximum growth after 24 h of incubation. The predominant form of arsenite oxidase was extracellular in B. cereus while in A. junii both types of activities, intracellular and extracellular, were found. The extracellular aresenite oxidase activity was found to be 730 and 750 µM/m for B. cereus and A. junii, respectively. The arsenite oxidase from both bacterial strains showed maximum activity at 37 °C, pH 7 and enhanced in the presence of Zn2+. The presence of two protein bands with molecular weight of approximately 70 and 14 kDa in the presence of arsenic points out a possible role in arsenite oxidation. Arsenite oxidation potential of B. cereus and A. junii was determined up to 92 and 88 % in industrial wastewater after 6 days of incubation. The bacterial treated wastewater improved the growth of Vigna radiata as compared to the untreated wastewater. It indicates that these bacterial strains may find some potential applications in wastewater treatment systems to transform toxic arsenite into less toxic form, arsenate.

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This work was supported by the research Grant No. 20/1373/R&D/10 from Higher Education Commission (HEC), Islamabad Pakistan which is gratefully acknowledged.

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Correspondence to Abdul Rehman.

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Naureen, A., Rehman, A. Arsenite oxidizing multiple metal resistant bacteria isolated from industrial effluent: their potential use in wastewater treatment. World J Microbiol Biotechnol 32, 133 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11274-016-2079-3

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  • Arsenite
  • B. cereus
  • A. junii
  • Arsenite oxidase
  • Wastewater treatment