Degradation of Adsorbed Azo Dye by Solid-State Fermentation: Improvement of Culture Conditions, a Kinetic Study, and Rotating Drum Bioreactor Performance

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Journal Article
Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, 2017, 228 (6)
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© 2017, Springer International Publishing Switzerland. The presence of synthetic dyes in effluents leads to an environmental imbalance characterized by a decrease in photosynthetic activity and, therefore, a reduction of available oxygen, which affects all living aquatic species. To reduce this problem, a combination adsorption and biodegradation treatment strategy is proposed. In this work, Red 40 dye was adsorbed onto a low-cost waste product, followed by degradation by Trametes versicolor under solid state fermentation conditions. The principal aim of this research was to establish the best fermentation conditions using a kinetic evaluation of both degradation and laccase enzyme activity. The process was scaled-up using a rotating drum bioreactor. The best process conditions were a carbon:nitrogen ratio of 30:1, a moisture percentage of 75%, and an inductor concentration of 0.5 mM; the maximum dye degradation was 96.04%. Under these optimized conditions, the highest enzymatic activity was 8.49 U/gdm after 14 days of culture at the flask scale. Using a rotating drum bioreactor, 630 mg of azo dye was degraded after 30 days of culture. Red 40 dye degradation was confirmed using infrared spectroscopy Fourier transform infrared spectrometer and HPLC-MS techniques. The results show that the degradation percentage has a direct relation with laccase activity, and the obtained efficiency in the rotating drum bioreactor confirms the potential of this methodology for implementation at the industrial level.
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