Effect of CO₂ and metal-rich waste water on bioproduct potential of the diazotrophic freshwater cyanobacterium, Tolypothrix sp.

Velu, Chinnathambi, Cirés, Samuel, Brinkman, Diane L., and Heimann, Kirsten (2019) Effect of CO₂ and metal-rich waste water on bioproduct potential of the diazotrophic freshwater cyanobacterium, Tolypothrix sp. Heliyon, 5 (4). e01549.

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Abstract

Continued economic growth is reliant on stable, affordable energy, requiring at present fossil fuel-derived energy production. Coal-fired power stations produce metal-rich but macro-nutrient-poor waste waters and emit flue gas, containing ∼10% CO₂. Algae and cyanobacteria remediate metals and CO₂, but use of N₂-fixing (diazotrophic) cyanobacteria can reduce nitrogen-fertilization costs. The resulting biomass represents a promising source for biofuel and bio-product development. This study investigated the effect of CO₂- and trace metals on growth performance, biochemical profiles and metal content of the freshwater diazotrophic cyanobacterium Tolypothrix sp. to assess bioproduct potential. Aerated 2 L batch cultures were grown in simulated ash-dam water (SADW) and BG11 without nitrogen (BG11(-N) controls). Supplied air was supplemented with either 15% CO₂ or not (non-CO₂ controls). CO₂ supplementation resulted in 2.4 and 3.3-fold higher biomass productivities and 1.3 and 1.2-fold higher phycocyanin and phycoerythrin contents, whilst metals (media) had no effect. Al, Cu, Ni and V were more efficiently removed (50-90%) with CO₂-addition, while As, Mo, Se and Sr removal was higher (30-87%) for non-CO₂ controls. No significant effect on Zn and Fe removal was evident. Calculated biomass metal concentrations, at quantities required to meet N-requirements of wheat, suggests no metal toxicity when applied as a mineral-nitrogen biofertilizer. With a carbohydrate content of 50%, the biomass is also suitable for bioethanol production. In summary, Tolypothrix sp. raised in ash dam waste water supplemented with flue gas CO₂ could yield high-value phycobiliproteins, bioethanol or biogas, and mineral-rich nitrogen fertilizer which would offset remediation costs and improve agricultural productivity.

Item ID: 58423
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2405-8440
Keywords: agriculture, biochemistry, biotechnology, plant biology
Copyright Information: © 2019 The Authors. This is an open access article under CC BY-NC-ND license.
Funders: Advanced Manufacturing Co-operative Research Centre (AMCRC), James Cook University, Essential Agriculture
Projects and Grants: AMCRC Grant number 2.3.4., AMCRC PhD scholarship
Date Deposited: 29 May 2019 07:44
FoR Codes: 10 TECHNOLOGY > 1003 Industrial Biotechnology > 100302 Bioprocessing, Bioproduction and Bioproducts @ 50%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0601 Biochemistry and Cell Biology > 060101 Analytical Biochemistry @ 25%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0599 Other Environmental Sciences > 059999 Environmental Sciences not elsewhere classified @ 25%
SEO Codes: 85 ENERGY > 8505 Renewable Energy > 850501 Biofuel (Biomass) Energy @ 25%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9609 Land and Water Management > 960908 Mining Land and Water Management @ 50%
82 PLANT PRODUCTION AND PLANT PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8298 Environmentally Sustainable Plant Production > 829899 Environmentally Sustainable Plant Production not elsewhere classified @ 25%
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