Simultaneous cleanup of Reactive Black 5 and cadmium by a desert soil bacterium

Ibtihel Louatia* (Corresponding Author), Jihene Elloumi-Mseddi, Wissem Cheikhrouhou, Bilel Hadrich, Moncef Nasria, Sami Aifa, Stephen Woodward, Tahar Mechichi* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)
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Multi-contaminated industrial wastewaters pose serious environmental risks due to high toxicity and non-biodegradability. The work reported here evaluated the ability of Pseudomonas aeruginosa strain Gb30 isolated from desert soil to simultaneously remove cadmium (Cd) and Reactive Black 5 (RB5), both common contaminants in various industrial effluents. The strain was able to grow normally and decolorize 50 mg L-1 RB5 within 24 h of incubation in the presence of 0.629 m mol L-1 of Cd2+. In order to evaluate strain performance in RB5 detoxification, a cytotoxicity test using Human Embryonic Kidney cells (HEK293) was used. Cadmium removal from culture media was determined using atomic adsorption. Even in presence of (0.115 + 0.157 + 0.401 +0.381) m mol L-1, respectively, of Cr6+, Cd2+, Cu2+ and Zn2+ in the growth medium, strain Gb30 successfully removed 35% of RB5 and 44%, 36%, 59% and 97%, respectively, of introduced Zn2+, Cu2+, Cr6+ and Cd2+, simultaneously. In order to understand the mechanism of Cd removal used by P. aeruginosa strain Gb30, biosorption and bioaccumulation abilities were examined. The strain was preferentially biosorbing Cd on the cell surface, as opposed to intracellular bioaccumulation. Microscopic investigations using AFM, SEM and FTIR analysis of the bacterial biomass confirmed the presence of various structural features, which enabled the strain to interact with metal ions. The study suggests that Pseudomonas aeruginosa Gb30 is a potential candidate for bioremediation of textile effluents in the presence of complex dye-metal contamination.
Original languageEnglish
Article number110103
Pages (from-to)110103
Number of pages7
JournalEcotoxicology and Environmental Safety
Early online date27 Dec 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2020

Bibliographical note

This work was supported by the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research of Tunisia. Special thanks to the Materials Engineering Department of the National School of Engineers of Sfax for help in FTIR spectroscopy analysis and the Digital Research Center of Sfax (CRNS) for support in AFM spectroscopy.


  • dyes
  • heavy metals
  • resistance
  • biodegradation
  • co-removal
  • biosorption
  • Biodegradation
  • Resistance
  • Biosorption
  • Dyes
  • Co-removal
  • Heavy metals


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