Indian Journal of Microbiology

, Volume 50, Issue 4, pp 438–442 | Cite as

Biosorption of Pb2+ and Zn2+ by Non-Living Biomass of Spirulina sp.

  • Rajiv Kumar Aneja
  • Gunjan Chaudhary
  • Sarabjeet Singh Ahluwalia
  • Dinesh Goyal
Original Article


Removal of heavy metals (Pb2+, Zn2+) from aqueous solution by dried biomass of Spirulina sp. was investigated. Spirulina rapidly adsorbed appreciable amount of lead and zinc from the aqueous solutions within 15 min of initial contact with the metal solution and exhibited high sequestration of lead and zinc at low equilibrium concentrations. The specific adsorption of both Pb2+ and Zn2+ increased at low concentration and decreased when biomass concentration exceeded 0.1 g l−1. The binding of lead followed Freundlich model of kinetics where as zinc supported Langmuir isotherm for adsorption with their r 2 values of 0.9659 and 0.8723 respectively. The adsorption was strongly pH dependent as the maximum lead biosorption occurred at pH 4 and 10 whereas Zn2+ adsorption was at pH 8 and 10.


Biosorption Spirulina sp. Lead Zinc 

List of symbols



Metal ion adsorbed per unit mass of Spirulina (mg g−1), at equilibrium


Volume of solution (l)


Initial concentration of metal ions in solution (mg l−1)


Final concentration of metal ions in solution (mg l−1)


Mass of biomass (g)


Langmuir parameter, maximum theoretical adsorption upon complete saturation of the surface (mg g−1)


Langmuir constant related to the energy of adsorption desorption (l mg−1)


Freundlich constant related to the strength of the adsorptive bond (mg1−n /g l n )


Freundlich constant related to bond distribution



The authors thank the Director, Thapar University, Patiala, India, for providing the infrastructure and facilities and to University Grant Commission for providing the financial support vide Approval F-3-16/2002 (SR-II), dated March 16, 2002.


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Copyright information

© Association of Microbiologists of India 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rajiv Kumar Aneja
    • 1
  • Gunjan Chaudhary
    • 1
  • Sarabjeet Singh Ahluwalia
    • 1
  • Dinesh Goyal
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biotechnology and Environmental SciencesThapar UniversityPatialaIndia

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