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Bioremoval of Cu(II), Zn(II), Pb(II) and Cd(II) by Nostoc muscorum isolated from a coal mining site

Hazarika, Jayeeta, Pakshirajan, Kannan, Sinharoy, Arindam, Syiem, Mayashree B.
Journal of applied phycology 2015 v.27 no.4 pp. 1525-1534
Nostoc muscorum, aqueous solutions, biomass, cadmium, coal, copper, experimental design, heavy metals, inoculum, lead, mining, pH, toxicity, zinc
This study evaluated the potential of the cyanobacterium Nostoc muscorum isolated from a mining environment for the removal of the heavy metals Cu(II), Zn(II), Pb(II) and Cd(II) from a constituent aqueous solution of different initial concentrations (5 to 50 mg L⁻¹). Prior to the metal bioremoval experiments, the effect of three main culture parameters, i.e. inoculum volume, inoculum age and pH, on N. muscorum growth was assessed and their levels optimized employing the Taguchi experimental design technique. The batch metal removal kinetics showed a maximum removal of Pb(II) (98 %) and Cu(II) (87.8 %), followed by Cd(II) (82 %) and Zn(II) (67.2 %) at 5 mg L⁻¹ initial metal concentration. Furthermore, estimation of protein, carbohydrate and biomass contents of the metal-exposed N. muscorum revealed that Zn(II) and Cd(II) are more toxic compared to Cu(II) at all initial metal concentrations, whereas it was more tolerant towards Pb(II).