Emphasis on water reuse in agricultural sector receives a renewed interest to close the loop in circular economy, especially in dry and water-stressed regions. In this work, wastewater from cooperative smoked sheet rubber factory and the effluent (digestate) from its treatment system (anaerobic digester) were used as medium to grow purple non-sulfur bacteria (PNSB), Rhodopseudomonas palustris strain PP803, with wood vinegar supplement at mid-log growth phase to stimulate the release of 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA), a plant growth promotor. Wastewater-to-digestate ratios (D:W) represented by soluble chemical oxygen demand (SCOD) were found to influence both the growth of R. palustris and synthesis of ALA. The highest ALA release of 16.02 ± 0.75 μM and the biomass accumulation of 1302 ± 78 mg/L were obtained from the medium SCOD of 4953 mg/L. Although retarding biomass accumulation by 28–36%, wood vinegar (WV) addition was proven to improve ALA release by 40%. Result suggested that SCOD of 3438 mg/L (75:25 D:W) contained sufficient carbon source for PNSB growth and was chosen to subsequently run the photo-bioreactor (PBR) to sustain R. palustris PP803 cells production. In continuous PBR operation, PNSB proliferation suffered from the low organic concentration in PBR at low organic loading. An organic loading increase to 1.21 g COD/L day was found to attain highest biomass concentration and longest PNSB dominant period over microalgea. In this study, a real-time monitoring protocol of PNSB and microalgae was specifically developed based on image color analysis at acceptable accuracy (R2 = 0.94). In the final assay, verification of the PBR-grown inoculant was conducted and ALA release efficiency was discussed under various wood vinegar dosages and dosing frequencies. This work has advanced our understandings closer to practical field application.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT for USA
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.
Chemical oxygen demand
Cooperative smoked sheet rubber factory
Hydraulic retention time
Most probable number
Organic loading rate
Purple non-sulfur bacteria
Pigment red to pigment green ratio
- RMPN :
Ratio of PNSB to total (PNSB + MICA) in the effluent based on MPN/L
Soluble chemical oxygen demand
Time of culturing
Total chemical oxygen demand
Aguirre-Gutiérrez J, Oliveras I, Rifai S, Fauset S, Adu-Bredu S, Affum-Baffoe K, Baker TR, Feldpausch TR, Gvozdevaite A, Hubau W, Kraft NJB, Lewis SL, Moore S, Niinemets Ü, Peprah T, Phillips OL, Ziemińska K, Enquist B, Malhi Y (2019) Drier tropical forests are susceptible to functional changes in response to a long-term drought. Ecol Lett 22:855–865
Al-Qurashi AD, Awad MA (2011) 5-Aminolevulinc acid increases tree yield and improves fruit quality of ‘Rabia’ and ‘Sukkariat-Yanbo’ date palm cultivars under hot arid climate. Sci Hortic 129:441–448
APHA, AWWA, WEF (2012) Standard methods for the examination of water and wastewater, 22nd edn. American Public Health Association, Washington, D.C.
Blodgett R (2010) BAM Appendix 2: most probable number from serial dilutions. https://www.fda.gov/food/laboratory-methods-food/bam-appendix-2-most-probable-number-serial-dilutions.
Chaiprapat S, Cheng J, Classen JJ, Ducoste JJ, Liehr SK (2003) Modeling nitrogen transport in duckweed pond for secondary treatment of swine wastewater. J Environ Eng 129:731–739
Chaiprapat S, Rakngam I, Suksaroj T (2015) Evaluation of biogas production enhancement by co-digestion and biogas to firewood replacement in small cooperative rubber sheet factories (phase 2). Final Report, Thailand Research Fund, Thailand (in Thai),
Chaiprapat S, Sasibunyarat T, Charnnok B, Cheirsilp B (2017) Intensifying clean energy production through cultivating mixotrophic microalgae from digestates of biogas systems: effects of light intensity, medium dilution, and cultivating time. Bioenerg Res 10:103–114
Chaiprapat S, Sdoodee S (2007) Effects of wastewater recycling from natural rubber smoked sheet production on economic crops in southern Thailand. Resour Conserv Recycl 51:577–590
Chitapornpan S, Chiemchaisri C, Chiemchaisri W, Honda R, Yamamoto K (2012) Photosynthetic bacteria production from food processing wastewater in sequencing batch and membrane photo-bioreactors. Water Sci Technol 65:504–512
Fuldauer LI, Parker BM, Yaman R, Borrion A (2018) Managing anaerobic digestate from food waste in the urban environment: evaluating the feasibility from an interdisciplinary perspective. J Clean Prod 185:929–940
Garcia GPP, Diniz RCO, Bicalho SK, Franco V, Pereira AD, Brandt EF, Etchebehere C, Chernicharo CAL, de Araujo JC (2017) Microbial community and sulphur behaviour in phototrophic reactors treating UASB effluent under different operational conditions. Int Biodeterior Biodegradation 119:486–498
Güllü D, Demirbaş A (2001) Biomass to methanol via pyrolysis process. Energ Convers Manage 42:1349–1356
Harada N, Nishiyama M, Matsumoto S (2001) Inhibition of methanogens increases photo-dependent nitrogenase activities in anoxic paddy soil amended with rice straw. FEMS Microbiol Ecol 35:231–238
Honda R, Fukushi K, Yamamoto K (2006) Optimization of wastewater feeding for single-cell protein production in an anaerobic wastewater treatment process utilizing purple non-sulfur bacteria in mixed culture condition. J Biotechnol 125:565–573
Kantachote D, Nunkaew T, Kantha T, Chaiprapat S (2016) Biofertilizers from Rhodopseudomonas palustris strains to enhance rice yields and reduce methane emissions. Appl Soil Ecol 100:154–161
Liu S, Li X, Zhang G, Zhang J (2015) Optimization of influencing factors on biomass accumulation and 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) yield in Rhodobacter sphaeroides wastewater treatment. J Microbiol Biotechnol 25:1920–1927
Liu S, Zhang G, Zhang J, Li X, Li J (2016a) Performance, 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) yield and microbial population dynamics in a photobioreactor system treating soybean wastewater: effect of hydraulic retention time (HRT) and organic loading rate (OLR). Bioresour Technol 210:146–152
Liu S, Zhang G, Zhang J, Li X, Li J (2016b) Performance, carotenoids yield and microbial population dynamics in a photobioreactor system treating acidic wastewater: effect of hydraulic retention time (HRT) and organic loading rate (OLR). Bioresour Technol 200:245–252
Lu H, Peng M, Zhang G, Li B, Li Y (2019a) Brewery wastewater treatment and resource recovery through long term continuous-mode operation in pilot photosynthetic bacteria-membrane bioreactor. Sci Total Environ 646:196–205
Lu H, Zhang G, Zheng Z, Meng F, Du T, He S (2019b) Bio-conversion of photosynthetic bacteria from non-toxic wastewater to realize wastewater treatment and bioresource recovery: a review. Bioresour Technol 278:383–399
Meng F, Yang A, Zhang G, Zhang P, Ye J (2018) Benchmark study of photosynthetic bacteria bio-conversion of wastewater: carbon source range, fundamental kinetics of substrate degradation and cell proliferation. Bioresour Technol Reports 1:31–38
Mohd Udaiyappan AF, Abu Hasan H, Takriff MS, Sheikh Abdullah SR (2017) A review of the potentials, challenges and current status of microalgae biomass applications in industrial wastewater treatment. J Water Process Eng 20:8–21
Nandi D, Shemin D (1968) δ-Aminolevulinic acid dehydratase of Rhodopseudomonas spheroides III. Mechanism of porphobilinogen synthesis. J Biol Chem 243:1236–1242
Nookongbut P, Kantachote D, Megharaj M, Naidu R (2018) Reduction in arsenic toxicity and uptake in rice (Oryza sativa L.) by As-resistant purple nonsulfur bacteria. Environ Sci Pollut Res 25:36530–36544
Nunkaew T, Kantachote D, Chaiprapat S, Nitoda T, Kanzaki H (2018) Use of wood vinegar to enhance 5-aminolevulinic acid production by selected Rhodopseudomonas palustris in rubber sheet wastewater for agricultural use. Saudi J Bio Sci 25:642–650
Nunkaew T, Kantachote D, Kanzaki H, Nitoda T, Ritchie RJ (2014) Effects of 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA)-containing supernatants from selected Rhodopseudomonas palustris strains on rice growth under NaCl stress, with mediating effects on chlorophyll, photosynthetic electron transport and antioxidative enzymes. Electron J Biotechnol 17:19–26
Nunkaew T, Kantachote D, Nitoda T, Kanzaki H (2015) Selection of salt tolerant purple nonsulfur bacteria producing 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) and reducing methane emissions from microbial rice straw degradation. Appl Soil Ecol 86:113–120
Palamae S, Choorit W, Dechatiwongse P, Zhang D, Antonio del Rio-Chanona E, Chisti Y (2018) Production of renewable biohydrogen by Rhodobacter sphaeroides S10: a comparison of photobioreactors. J Clean Prod 181:318–328
Qin L, Liu Q, Meng Q, Fan Z, He J, Liu T, Shen C, Zhang G (2017) Anoxic oscillating MBR for photosynthetic bacteria harvesting and high salinity wastewater treatment. Bioresour Technol 224:69–77
Rao PS, Saraswathyamma CK, Sethuraj MR (1998) Studies on the relationship between yield and meteorological parameters of Para rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis). Agric For Meteorol 90:235–245
Saikeur A, Choorit W, Prasertsan P, Kantachote D, Sasaki K (2009) Influence of precursors and inhibitor on the production of extracellular 5-aminolevulinic acid and biomass by Rhodopseudomonas palustris KG31. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem 73:987–992
Sasaki K, Ikeda S, Nishizawa Y, Hayashi M (1987) Production of 5-aminolevulinic acid by photosynthetic bacteria. J Ferment Technol 65:511–515
Sasaki K, Tanaka T, Nishizawa Y, Hayashi M (1991) Enhanced production of 5-aminolevulinic acid by repeated addition of levulinic acid and supplement of precursors in photoheterotrophic culture of Rhodobacter sphaeroides. J Ferment Bioeng 71:403–406
Smart JL, Willett JW, Bauer CE (2004) Regulation of hem gene expression in Rhodobacter capsulatus by redox and photosystem regulators RegA, CrtJ, FnrL, and AerR. J Mol Biol 342:1171–1186
Wu Y, Liao WB, Dawuda MM, Hu LL, Yu JH (2019) 5-Aminolevulinic acid (ALA) biosynthetic and metabolic pathways and its role in higher plants: a review. Plant Growth Regul 87:357–374
Zhi R, Yang A, Zhang G, Zhu Y, Meng F, Li X (2019) Effects of light-dark cycles on photosynthetic bacteria wastewater treatment and valuable substances production. Bioresour Technol 274:496–501
Research facility of the Biogas and Biorefinery Research Laboratory at the Faculty of Engineering of Price of Songkla University was very much appreciated.
This research was financially supported by the Thailand Research Fund (TRF) and Thai Rubber Latex Cooperative Ltd. (Nam Yang Thai Coop. Co., Ltd.) through the Research and Researcher for Industries (RRI) Grant No. MSD5710062. The authors would also like to thank partial supports from Annual Research Budget of the Prince of Songkla University (PSU) contract no. ENG570183S and the Graduate School of Prince of Songkla University.
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
Responsible Editor: Ta Yeong Wu
About this article
Cite this article
Hosakul, P., Kantachote, D., Saritpongteeraka, K. et al. Upgrading industrial effluent for agricultural reuse: effects of digestate concentration and wood vinegar dosage on biosynthesis of plant growth promotor. Environ Sci Pollut Res (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-08014-w
- 5-aminolevulinic acid
- Purple non-sulfur bacteria
- Anaerobic digester
- Wood vinegar
- Image color analysis
- Wastewater reclamation