Biological approaches of fluoride remediation: potential for environmental clean-up

Abstract

Fluoride (F), anion of fluorine which is naturally present in soil and water, behaves as toxic inorganic pollutant even at lower concentration and needs immediate attention. Its interaction with flora, fauna and other forms of life, such as microbes, adversely affect various physiochemical parameters by interfering with several metabolic pathways. Conventional methods of F remediation are time-consuming, laborious and cost intensive, which renders them uneconomical for sustainable agriculture. The solution lies in cracking down this environmental contaminant by adopting economic, eco-friendly, cost-effective and modern technologies. Biological processes, viz. bioremediation involving the use of bacteria, fungi, algae and higher plants that holds promising alternative to manage F pollution, recover contaminated soil and improve vegetation. The efficiency of indigenous natural agents may be enhanced, improved and selected over the hazardous chemicals in sustainable agriculture. This review article emphasizes on various biological approaches for the remediation of F-contaminated environment, and exploring their potential applications in environmental clean-up. It further focuses on thorough systemic study of modern biotechnological approaches such as gene editing and gene manipulation techniques for enhancing the plant-microbe interactions for F degradation, drawing attention towards latest progresses in the field of microbial assisted treatment of F-contaminated ecosystems. Future research and understanding of the molecular mechanisms of F bioremediation would add on to the possibilities of the application of more competent strains showing striking results under diverse ecological conditions.

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Funding

The authors would like to thank University Grants Commission, New Delhi, and Scientific and Engineering Research Board, New Delhi, for awarding fellowships to Priya Katiyar and Neha Pandey, respectively. Authors are also grateful to Department of Science & Technology, New Delhi, for financial support through DST-FIST scheme.

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Katiyar, P., Pandey, N. & Sahu, K.K. Biological approaches of fluoride remediation: potential for environmental clean-up. Environ Sci Pollut Res 27, 13044–13055 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-08224-2

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Keywords

  • Fluoride
  • Bioremediation
  • Plant growth promoting bacteria