Abstract: The effect of chromium removal by Algae-bacteria Bostrychia calliptera (Rhodomelaceae) consortia under laboratory conditions. Water pollution is one of the most important environmental problems worldwide. Recently, biotechnology studies have oriented efforts to study algae-bacterium consortia with the aim to understand the mechanisms to find a possible solution in environmental sciences. This study determined the percentage of chromium removal by the alga-bacterium association exposed to a set of different chromium concentrations under controlled in vitro conditions. Wild plants of Bostrychia calliptera associated with bacterial populations were collected from Dagua River, Pacific coast of Colombia, and were monitored in the laboratory. The trial was conducted with synthetic seawater in bioreactors at two chromium levels: 5 and 10mg/L, and four different experimental treatments: i) algae-bacteria (AB), ii) algae with antibiotic (AA), iii) algal surface sediment, Natural Bacterial Consortium (CBN), and iv) the control without algae or bacteria. The experimental design followed a model of two factors (chromium concentration x combination types) with repeated measures using one factor. The microbial population behavior and the chromium concentration percentage were monitored by using atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS). According to the data, Algae-bacteria (AB) treatment was the most efficient combination at 10mg/L (87%), whereas the bacterial consortia (CBN) was the most efficient at 5mg/L (62.85%). The results showed significant differences of chromium uptake between algae-bacteria (AB) and natural bacterial consortia (CBN), meaning the importance of those treatments in the chromium removal from coastal waters.
Keywords: Bostrychia calliptera, chromium-reducing bacteria, biotransformation, water pollution, chromium contamination