Biosorption of copper by fungal melanin

Geoffrey M. Gadd, Louise de Rome

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    179 Citations (Scopus)


    Melanin obtained from Aureobasidium pullulans and Cladosporium resinae was an efficient biosorbent for copper. Copper uptake could be expressed using various adsorption isotherms; melanin from A. pullulans obeyed Freundlich and Langmuir isotherms whereas C. resinae melanin followed the BET isotherm indicating a more complex type of adsorption than in A. pullulans. In general, uptake capacities of melanin were greater than for intact biomass and the higher uptake by pigmented rather than albino biomass could be correlated with the presence of melanin. Cu2+ was less readily desorbed from melanin by dilute mineral acids than from intact biomass and again, the relative ease of Cu2+ desorption from pre-loaded pigmented or albino biomass was correlated with the presence or absence of melanin. Mg2+ and Zn2+ appeared to be the most effective cations for desorption with Na+ and K+ the least effective. The addition of melanin to a coppercontaining culture of the albino strain of A. pullulans resulted in some reduction of toxicity.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)610-617
    Number of pages8
    JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 1988


    • Copper
    • Biomass
    • Toxicity
    • Adsorption Isotherm
    • Biosorption

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Biotechnology
    • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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