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J Hazard Mater. 2009 Oct 15;170(1):314-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2009.04.094. Epub 2009 May 4.

Azo dye decolorization by a new fungal isolate, Penicillium sp. QQ and fungal-bacterial cocultures.

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School of Environmental and Biological Science and Technology, Key Laboratory of Industrial Ecology and Environmental Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116023, China.


A new azo dyes-decolorizing fungi strain QQ was isolated from activated sludge. It was identified as Penicillium sp. based on 26S rRNA gene sequence analysis. The study indicated that strain QQ could aerobically decolorize Reactive Brilliant Red X-3B by the way of bioadsorption, and nutrient-poor medium was more beneficial for adsorption. Decolorization rate was inversely proportional to the size of mycelial pellets. The optimum pH was observed at 4 or 5 for X-3B decolorization. There was still 70% color removal when salinity increased to 6%. By contrast with aerobic decolorization, the degradation of azo dyes occurred under anaerobic conditions, and some azo dyes could be absolutely decolorized. Furthermore, the decolorization of azo dyes by fungal-bacterial cocultures was investigated. The results demonstrated that strain QQ and Sphingomonas xenophaga QYY cocultures performed better than any single strain did. Weak acidity conditions and the presence of small amount of surfactant could enhance the ability of consortium to decolorize azo dyes.

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