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J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2011 Mar;21(3):267-73.

Decolorization and biotransformation of triphenylmethane dye, methyl violet, by Aspergillus sp. isolated from Ladakh, India.

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Chemical Biology Laboratory, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, Hyderabad, India.


Methyl violet, used extensively in the commercial textile industry and as a biological stain, is a hazardous recalcitrant. Aspergillus sp. strain CB-TKL-1 isolated from a water sample from Tsumoriri Lake, Karzok, Ladakh, India, was found to completely decolorize methyl violet within 24 h when cultured under aerobic conditions at 25 degrees C. The rate of decolorization was determined by monitoring the decrease in the absorbance maxima of the dye by UV-visible spectroscopy. The decolorization of methyl violet was optimal at pH 5.5 and 30 degrees C when agitated at 200 rpm. Addition of glucose or arabinose (2%) as a carbon source and sodium nitrate or soyapeptone (0.2%) as a nitrogen source enhanced the decolorization ability of the culture. Furthermore, the culture exhibited a maximum decolorization rate of methyl violet after 24 h when the C:N ratio was 10. Nine N-demethylated decolorized products of methyl violet were identified based on UV-visible spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), and LC-MS analyses. The decolorization of methyl violet at the end of 24 h generated mono-, di-, tri-, tetra-, penta-, and hexa-Ndemethylated intermediates of pararosaniline. The variation of the relative absorption peaks in the decolorized sample indicated a linear decrease of hexa-N-demethylated compounds to non-N-demethylated pararosaniline, indicating a stepwise N-demethylation in the decolorization process.

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