Mixotrophic cyanobacteria and microalgae as distinctive biological agents for organic pollutant degradation

Environment International. 2013;51:59-72

 

Journal Homepage

Journal Title: Environment International

ISSN: 0160-4120 (Print)

Publisher: Elsevier

LCC Subject Category: Geography. Anthropology. Recreation: Environmental sciences

Country of publisher: United Kingdom

Language of fulltext: English

Full-text formats available: PDF, HTML

 

AUTHORS

Suresh R. Subashchandrabose (Centre for Environmental Risk Assessment and Remediation, University of South Australia, SA5095, Australia, and Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of Environment, PO Box 486 Salisbury South, SA5106, Australia)
Balasubramanian Ramakrishnan (Centre for Environmental Risk Assessment and Remediation, University of South Australia, SA5095, Australia, and Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of Environment, PO Box 486 Salisbury South, SA5106, Australia; Division of Microbiology, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi 110012, India)
Mallavarapu Megharaj (Centre for Environmental Risk Assessment and Remediation, University of South Australia, SA5095, Australia, and Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of Environment, PO Box 486 Salisbury South, SA5106, Australia; Corresponding author at: Environmental Biotechnology, Centre for Environmental Risk Assessment and Remediation, University of South Australia, X Building, Room X1-14, Mawson Lakes Campus, Mawson Lakes, South Australia, SA5095, Australia. Tel.: +61 8 8302 5044; fax: +61 8 8302 3057.)
Kadiyala Venkateswarlu (Centre for Environmental Risk Assessment and Remediation, University of South Australia, SA5095, Australia, and Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of Environment, PO Box 486 Salisbury South, SA5106, Australia; Department of Microbiology, Sri Krishnadevaraya University, Anantapur 515055, India)
Ravi Naidu (Centre for Environmental Risk Assessment and Remediation, University of South Australia, SA5095, Australia, and Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of Environment, PO Box 486 Salisbury South, SA5106, Australia)

EDITORIAL INFORMATION

Blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 12 weeks

 

Abstract | Full Text

Millions of natural and synthetic organic chemical substances are present in both soil and aquatic environments. Toxicity and/or persistence determine the polluting principle of these substances. The biological responses to these pollutants include accumulation and degradation. The responses of environments with organic pollutants are perceptible from the dwindling degradative abilities of microorganisms. Among different biological members, cyanobacteria and microalgae are highly adaptive through many eons, and can grow autotrophically, heterotrophically or mixotrophically. Mixotrophy in cyanobacteria and microalgae can provide many competitive advantages over bacteria and fungi in degrading organic pollutants. Laboratory culturing of strict phototrophic algae has limited the realization of their potential as bioremediation agents. In the natural assemblages, mixotrophic algae can contribute to sequestration of carbon, which is otherwise emitted as carbon dioxide to the atmosphere under heterotrophic conditions by other organisms. Molecular methods and metabolic and genomic information will help not only in identification and selection of mixotrophic species of cyanobacteria and microalgae with capabilities to degrade organic pollutants but also in monitoring the efficiency of remediation efforts under the field conditions. These organisms are relatively easier for genetic engineering with desirable traits. This review presents a new premise from the literature that mixotrophic algae and cyanobacteria are distinctive bioremediation agents with capabilities to sequester carbon in the environment. Keywords: Cyanobacteria, Microalgae, Mixotrophy, Biological agents, Organic pollutants, Biodegradation