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Appl Microbiol Biotechnol. 2013 Mar;97(6):2327-39. doi: 10.1007/s00253-013-4740-1. Epub 2013 Feb 12.

Contributions of biosurfactants to natural or induced bioremediation.

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Institute of Chemical Technology and Engineering, Poznan University of Technology, Pl. M. Skłodowskiej-Curie 2, 60-965 Poznań, Poland.


The number of studies dedicated to evaluating the influence of biosurfactants on bioremediation efficiency is constantly growing. Although significant progress regarding the explanation of mechanisms behind biosurfactant-induced effects could be observed, there are still many factors which are not sufficiently elucidated. This corresponds to the fact that although positive influence of biosurfactants is often reported, there are also numerous cases where no or negative effect was observed. This review summarizes the recent finding in the field of biosurfactant-amended bioremediation, focusing mainly on a critical approach towards potential limitations and causes of failure while investigating the effects of biosurfactants on the efficiency of biodegradation and phytoextraction processes. It also provides a summary of successive steps, which should be taken into consideration when designing biosurfactant-related treatment processes.

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