The water and soils pollution due to mercury emissions from mining industries represents a serious environmental problem and continuous risk to human health. Although many strategies have been designed for the recovery or elimination of this metal from environmental sources, microbial bioremediation has proven to be the most effective and environmentally friendly strategy and thus control heavy metal contamination. The main objective of this work, using native bacterial strains obtained from contaminated soils of the Peruvian region of Secocha, was to identify which of these strains would have growth capacity on mercury substrates to evaluate their adsorption behavior and mercury removal capacity. Through a DNA analysis (99.78% similarity) and atomic absorption spectrometry, the Gram-positive bacterium Zhihengliuella alba sp. T2.2 was identified as the strain with the highest mercury removal capacity from culture solutions with an initial mercury concentration of 162 mg·L−1 . The removal capacity reached values close to 39.5% in a period of incubation time of 45 days, with maximum elimination efficiency in the first 48 h. These results are encouraging and show that this native strain may be the key to the bioremediation of water and soils contaminated with mercury.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Funding: The author thanks the financial support of the UCSM.
© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
- Mercury removal
- Native bacterial strains
- Zhihengliuella alba