Indexed on: 04 Oct '12Published on: 04 Oct '12Published in: Journal of environmental science and health. Part A, Toxic/hazardous substances & environmental engineering
The study was aimed at investigating the potential use of calf intestinal alkaline phosphatase (CIAP) enzyme in the removal of heavy metals (Cd(2+), Ni(2+), Co(2+) and Cr(3+/6+)) from single ion solutions as well as tannery and electroplating effluents. CIAP mediated bioremediation (white biotechnology) is a novel technique that is eco-friendly and cost effective unlike the conventional chemical technologies. Typical reactions containing the enzyme (CIAP) and p-nitrophenyl phosphate (pNPP) as substrate in Tris-HCl buffer (pH 8 and 11) and either single ion metal solutions (250 ppm and 1000 ppm) or effluents from tannery or electroplating industry were incubated at 37°C for 30 min, 60 min and 120 min. The inorganic phosphate (P(i)) generated due to catalytic breakdown of pNPP complexes free metal ions as metal-phosphate and the amount of metal precipitated was derived by estimating the reduction in the free metal ion present in the supernatant of reactions employing atomic absorption spectrophotometer (AAS). Better precipitation of metal was obtained at pH 11 than at pH 8 and between the two concentrations of different metals tested, an initial metal concentration of 250 ppm in the reaction gave more precipitation than with 1000 ppm. Experimental data showed that at pH 11, the percentage of removal of metal ions (for an initial concentration of 250 ppm) was in the following order: Cd(2+) (80.99%) > Ni(2+) (64.78%) > Cr(3+) > (46.15%) > Co(2+) (36.47%) > Cr(6+) (32.33%). The overall removal of Cr(3+) and Cr(6+) from tannery effluent was 32.77% and 37.39% respectively in 120 min at pH 11. Likewise, the overall removal of Cd(2+), Co(2+) and Ni(2+) from electroplating effluent was 50.42%, 13.93% and 38.64% respectively in 120 min at pH 11. The study demonstrates that bioprecipitation by CIAP may be a viable and environmental friendly method for clean-up of heavy metals from tannery and electroplating effluents.