Abstract
BIOTRANSFORMATION OF INSOLUBLE LEAD CARBONATE TO SOLUBLE LEAD OXALATE BY FUNGUS ISOLATED FROM POLLUTED SOIL

S.H. Socrates,* and S. Shankar

ABSTRACT

Mining activities produce wastes which may contain heavy metals as contaminants. These residues are generally deposited on the ground and often occupy large extensions. The mining operations are the cause of heavy metal contaminated sites and the heavy metal contamination directly affects human health. The objective of this research was to investigate the ability of fungus, Gliocladium roseum to solubilize and immobilize insoluble lead carbonate (PbCO3). Soil fungi, were isolated from contaminated soil. Isolated fungi were plated on PDA medium supplemented with 0.5% (w/v) of insoluble lead compound. Isolated fungus, Gliocladium roseum only showed the activity in solubilizing insoluble lead compound with clear zone appearance 46.5 mm in diameter. Precipitation of lead biomineral crystals was observed in agar medium underneath colonies of Gliocladium roseum. The crystals were purified and analyzed by scanning electron microscope (SEM) and X-ray powder diffraction (XRPD), and the results revealed that it was lead oxalate (PbC2O4). It is suggested that soil fungus have potential application in heavy metal bioremediation.

Keywords: Biotransformation, Heavy metal, Lead compound, Fungus, Gliocladium roseum.


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