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Acetate biostimulation as an effective treatment for cleaning up alkaline soil highly contaminated with Cr(VI)

Lara, Paloma, Morett, Enrique, Juárez, Katy
Environmental science and pollution research international 2017 v.24 no.33 pp. 25513-25521
Arthrobacter, Halomonas, Herbaspirillum, Nesterenkonia, acetates, alkaline soils, chromium, cleaning, groundwater, microbial communities, pH, remediation, saline soils, soil sampling, toxicity, yeast extract, Mexico
Stimulation of microbial reduction of Cr(VI) to the less toxic and less soluble Cr(III) through electron donor addition has been regarded as a promising approach for the remediation of chromium-contaminated soil and groundwater sites. However, each site presents different challenges; local physicochemical characteristics and indigenous microbial communities influence the effectiveness of the biostimulation processes. Here, we show microcosm assays stimulation of microbial reduction of Cr(VI) in highly alkaline and saline soil samples from a long-term contaminated site in Guanajuato, Mexico. Acetate was effective promoting anaerobic microbial reduction of 15 mM of Cr(VI) in 25 days accompanied by an increase in pH from 9 to 10. Our analyses showed the presence of Halomonas, Herbaspirillum, Nesterenkonia/Arthrobacter, and Bacillus species in the soil sample collected. Moreover, from biostimulated soil samples, it was possible to isolate Halomonas spp. strains able to grow at 32 mM of Cr(VI). Additionally, we found that polluted groundwater has bacterial species different to those found in soil samples with the ability to resist and reduce chromate using acetate and yeast extract as electron donors.