5th International Young Scientist Congress (IYSC-2019).  International E-publication: Publish Projects, Dissertation, Theses, Books, Souvenir, Conference Proceeding with ISBN.  International E-Bulletin: Information/News regarding: Academics and Research

Bioremoval of Cadmium, Mercury, Nickel and Zinc from Leachate Sample Collected from Refuse Dump on Obiri Ikwerre / Air Port Link Road Using Living Cells of Aspegillus Niger and Rhizopus Stolonifer

Author Affiliations

  • 1 Rexall Research Services, Port Harcourt, NIGERIA
  • 2 Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Science, University of Port Harcourt, P.M.B 5323, Choba, Port Harcourt, NIGERIA
  • 3 Department of Pharmaceutical Microbiology, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Port Harcourt, NIGERIA

Int. Res. J. Environment Sci., Volume 2, Issue (11), Pages 1-8, November,22 (2013)


Bioremoval of heavy metals from leachate sample collected from refused dump on Obiri Ikwerre / Air port link road was studied. Five treatment options were set up. These include Natural process (positive control), poisoned and filtered sample (negative control), Aspergillus niger, Rhizopus stolonifer and a mixed culture of the above microorganisms. The experiment was conducted at ambient temperature (30 ± 2C and pH range of 6.8 to 8.9 and incubated for 60days. Physicochemical analyses of the leachate on day zero revealed the presence of Cadmium (1.74mg/l), Mercury (0.91mg/l), Nickel (2.6mg/l) and Zinc (4.52mg/l) and was found to be relatively high in relation to WHO environmental standards. At the end of 60 days, the various treatment options (Natural process(positive control), poisoned and filtered sample(negative control), Rhizopus stolonifer, Aspergillus niger, and a mixed culture of the above microorganisms) were able to bioaccumulate 69.4%, 2.9%, 53.3%, 48.1% and 49% of Cadmium; 47.1%, 1.0%, 38.2%, 52.7% and 35.4% of Nickel; 63.7%, 1.2%, 48.6%, 49.8% and 72.4% of Zinc respectively. Mercury was bioremoved by only Positive Control, Rhizopus stolonifer and the mixed culture (2.1%, 2.8% and 2.3%). However, not all the heavy metal recovered from the sample was bioconcentrated. Aspergillus niger, Rhizopus stolonifer and the mixed culture bioconcentrated 33%, 22.1% and 41% of Cadmium; 22%, 18% and 28% of Nickel; and 40.7%, 32.9% and 58% of Zinc. None of the treatment options bioconcentrated Mercury. Analysis of variance of the variables (various treatment options) showed that Natural process (positive control), Aspergillus niger and the mixed culture showed significant difference (P<0.05) with time while there was no significant difference (P0.05) for poisoned and filtered sample (negative control), and Rhizopus stolonife. This study has demonstrated the great potential of the above listed microorganisms to clean-up Cadmium, Nickel and Zinc impacted environment and can be employed in treatment of environments polluted with high levels of these metals.


  1. Volesky B., Bioremoval of heavy metals. Boca Ratón, FL., CRC Press, 396 ISBN 0-8493-4917-6 (1990)
  2. Volesky B., Bioremoval and me, Water Research, 41(18), 4017-4029 (2007)
  3. Esmaili S.N. and R. Atash-Dehghan, Proceedings of the th International (2003)
  4. Bhatnagar A. and Minocha A.K., Bioremoval optimization of nickel removal from water using Punica granatum peels waste, Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces, 76(2), 544-548 (2010)
  5. Donmez G. and Aksu Z., Bioaccumulation of copper (II) and nickel (II) by the non-adapted and adapted growing Candida sp. Water Research, 35(6), 1425-1434 (2001)
  6. Katarzyna C., Bioremoval of Cr (III) ions by eggshells, Journal of Hazardous Materials,121, 167-173 (2005)
  7. Mashitah M.D., Yus Azila Y. and Bhatia S., Bioremoval of Cadmium(II) ions by immobilized cells of Pycnoporus sanguineus from aqueous solution, Bioresource Technology, 99 (11), 4742-4748 (2008)
  8. Ozturk A., Removal of nickel from aqueous solution by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 147 (1-2), 518-523 (2007)
  9. Chong, K.H. and B. Volesky Description of 2-metal bioremoval equilibria by Langmuir-type models. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 47, 451-460 (1995)
  10. Mohan, D. and K.P. Singh Single-and multi-component adsorption of Cadmium and Zinc using activated carbon derived from bagasse-an agricultural waste. Water Research. 36, 2304-2318 (2002)
  11. Stanley, H.O and F.I.Onianwah Microbiological characteristics of solid wastes from selected hospitals in Port Harcourt Urban. Journal of Nigeria Environmental Society, 5(3), 139-146 (2010)
  12. IITA (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture). Selected Methods for Soil and Plant Analysis. Manual Series 1, Ibadan-Nigeria. (1979)
  13. Odu, C.T,I., Babalola O.,Udo E.J., Ogunkuule, A.O: Bakare T.A., and Adeoye, G.O Laboratory manual for agronomic studies in soils, plants and Microbiology. Dept. Of Agronomy, University of Ibadan. 83. (1956)
  14. Cheesbrough, M. Medical laboratory manual for tropical countries. Vol 2. Microbiology. Second edition. London(1991)
  15. Baker, F.J. and R. E. Silverton Introduction to medical laboratory technology. Six edition. Butterworths. London (1985)
  16. APHA, A. Standard methods for the examination of water and waste water. 19th Ed. Washington DC (1994)
  17. Aksu Z.; U. Acikel, T. Kutsal Application of multicomponent adsorption isotherms to simultaneous bioremoval of Iron (III) and Chromium (VI) on C. Vulgaris. J. Chem. Tech.Biotechnol.70, 368- 378 (1997)
  18. Muraleedharan T.R, I. Leela, and C. Venkobachar C Bioremoval: An attractive alternative for metal removal and recovery. Current Science.61, 379- 385 (1991)
  19. Gadd, G. M. and C. White Heavy metal and radionuclide accumulation and toxicity in fungi and yeast. In: POLE, R. K. and G.M GADD eds. Metal Microbe Interactions. Oxford, IRL Press, 1938 (1989)
  20. Melgar, M.J; J. Alonso and M.A. García Removal of toxic metal from aqueous solutions by fungal biomass of Agaricus macrosporus. Science of the Total Environment, 385 (1-3), 12-19 (2007)
  21. Louise de Rome, G. and M. Gadd Copper adsorption by Rhizopus arrhizus, Cladosporium resinae and Penicillium italicum. Appl. Microbiol. Biotechnol.26,84- 90 (1987)
  22. Aksu Z. and Kutsal T., lactic acid production from molasses. Utilizing lactobacillus delbrueckii and Column Reactor 7th European Congress on Biotechnology, 20-23 Feb. Nice France (1995)
  23. Say R., Denizli A. and Arica M.Y., Bioremoval of Cadmium(II), lead(II) and copper(II) with the filamentous fungus Phanerochaete chrysosporium,Bioresource Technology, 76(1), 67-70 (2001)
  24. Kuyucak N. and Volesky B., The elution of gold sequestered on a natural biosorbent, Biorecovery, 1, 205-218 (1989)
  25. Veglio F. and Beolchini F., Removal of metals by bioremoval: a review, Hydrometallurgy, 44, 301- 316(1997)
  26. Puranik P.R. and Paknikar K.M., Bioremoval of lead and Zinc from solutions using Streptoverticillium cinnamoneum waste biomass, J. Biotechnol., 55, 113-124(1997)
  27. Saiano F., Ciofalo M., Cacciola S.O. and Ramirez S., Metal ion adsorption by Phomopsis sp. biomaterial in laboratory experiments and real wastewater treatments, Water Research, 39(11), 2273-2280 (2005)