Potential absorption of mercury-contaminated substrate by Trichoderma sp isolated from Brazil Nuts and Amazon Soil
Keywords:Bioremediation, Inorganic contaminant, Trichoderma, Mercury, Brazil nuts
Mercury is an inorganic contaminant with serious harmful consequences to the environment. There has been a continuous rise in its level due to industrialization and other anthropogenic activities, such as the burning of coal and petroleum products, use of mercurial fungicides in agriculture and mercury catalyst in industries, and production of waste by paper industries. Five strains of Trichoderma sp., a filamentous fungi, were used in this study to evaluate their resistance to high concentrations of mercury for the purpose of using them for bioremediation. The solid culture medium used was prepared with malt agar 2% with pH 7.0 in which the strains of Trichoderma sp. were inoculated. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of the selected Trichoderma sp. isolates was calculated considering the time for growth and concentration of the mercury salt (Hg(NO3)2). At a mercury concentration of 50 mg/mL, maximum growth was first observed in TCH 1 (89.42 ± 0.63 mm) followed by TCH 2 isolate (87.33 ± 0.58 mm). At this concentration, all isolates reached the maximum mycelia growth. When the concentration of 200 mg/L Hg(NO3)2 was used, complete growth inhibition of the isolates was observed. Scanning electron microscopy suggested that differences in sporulation between the control and mercury treatment groups. In conclusion, it can be stated that Trichoderma isolates have great potential for bioremediation of sources contaminated with mercury.
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