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Bioresour Technol. 2006 Sep;97(14):1583-91. Epub 2005 Sep 8.

Biodegradation of high concentrations of hexadecane by Aspergillus niger in a solid-state system: kinetic analysis.

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  • 1Centro Nacional de Investigación y Capacitación Ambiental, Instituto Nacional de Ecología, Av. San Rafael Atlixco 186, Col. Vicentina. Iztapalapa, 09340, D.F. Mexico City, Mexico.


Solid-state microcosms were used to assess the influence of constant and variable C/N ratios on the biodegradation efficiency by Aspergillus niger at high hexadecane (HXD) concentrations (180-717 mg g-1). With a constant C/N ratio, 100% biodegradation (33-44% mineralization) was achieved after 15 days, at rates increasing as the HXD concentration increased. Biomass yields (YX/S) remained almost independent (approximately 0.77) of the carbon-source amount, while the specific growth rates (mu) decreased with increasing concentrations of HXD. With C/N ratios ranging from 29 to 115, complete degradation was only attained at 180 mg g-1, corresponding to 46% mineralization. YX/S diminished (approximately 0.50 units) as the C/N ratio increased. The highest values of mu (1.08 day-1) were obtained at low C/N values. Our results demonstrate that, under balanced nutritional conditions, high HXD concentrations can be completely degraded in solid-state microcosms, with a negligible (<10%) formation of by-products.

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