Bismuth(III) Volatilization and Immobilization by Filamentous Fungus Aspergillus clavatus During Aerobic Incubation
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As with many metals, bismuth can be accumulated or transformed by microorganisms. These interactions affect microbial consortia and bismuth environmental behaviour, mobility, and toxicity. Recent research focused specifically on bismuth anaerobic transformation by bacteria and archaea has inspired the evaluation of the mutual interactions between bismuth and filamentous fungi as presented in this article. The Aspergillus clavatus fungus proved resistant to adverse effects from bismuth contamination in culture medium with up to a concentration of 195 µmol L−1 during static 15- and 30-day cultivation. The examined resistance mechanism includes biosorption to the fungal surface and biovolatilization. Pelletized fungal biomass has shown high affinity for dissolved bismuth(III). Bismuth biosorption was rapid, reaching equilibrium after 50 min with a 0.35 mmol g−1 maximum sorption capacity as calculated from the Langmuir isotherm. A. clavatus accumulated ≤70 µmol g−1 of bismuth after 30 days. Preceding isotherm study implications that most accumulated bismuth binds to cell wall suggests that biosorption is the main detoxification mechanism. Accumulated bismuth was also partly volatilized (≤1 µmol) or sequestrated in the cytosol or vacuoles. Concurrently, ≤1.6 µmol of bismuth remaining in solution was precipitated by fungal activity. These observations indicate that complex mutual interactions between bismuth and filamentous fungi are environmentally significant regarding bismuth mobility and transformation.
KeywordsBismuth Biosorption Fungal Biomass Inductively Couple Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry Aspergillus Clavatus
This work was supported by the Scientific Grant Agency of the Slovak Republic Ministry of Education and the Slovak Academy of Sciences under VEGA contract Nos. 1/0860/11, 1/0836/15, and 1/0203/14.
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