Role of melanin in fungal biosorption of tributyltin chloride

G. M. Gadd (Lead / Corresponding author), D. J. Gray, P. J. Newby

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    34 Citations (Scopus)


    Intact biomass of an albino and a melanic strain of Aureobacidium pullulans, as well as purified melanin from the latter strain, was capable of tributyltin chloride (TBTC) removal from solution. Melanized biomass had a greater biosorptive capacity than albino biomass, this difference being attributable to the presence of melanin. Purified melanin had a large capacity for TBTC biosorption, the calculated maximum uptake capacity, qe, being approximately 35 mmol (g dry wt)-1. TBTC biosorption by intact biomass and melanin obeyed the Langmuir adsorption isotherm over the concentration range used, and was relatively unaffected by external pH between pH 3.5 and 6.5: an approximate 20% decrease in TBTC biosorption resulted at external pH 2.5. A TBTC concentration of 0.3 μM in growth medium resulted in a lag period which was longer with the albino strain (approximately 50 h) than with the pigmented strain (approximately 25 h). The addition of melanin to TBTC-containing growth media resulted in a reduction in toxicity and attainment of higher cell yields. The applied and environmental significance of these interactions are discussed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)116-121
    Number of pages6
    JournalApplied Microbiology and Biotechnology
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 1990


    • Biomass
    • Biosorption
    • Uptake Capacity
    • Maximum Uptake
    • Langmuir Adsorption Isotherm

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Biotechnology
    • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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