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Biomineralization of Sr by the cyanobacterium Pseudanabaena catenata under alkaline conditions

DOI: 10.3389/feart.2020.556244 DOI Help

Authors: Lynn Foster (The University of Manchester) , Katherine Morris (The University of Manchester) , Adrian Cleary (The University of Manchester) , Heath Bagshaw (University of Liverpool) , David Sigee (The University of Manchester) , Jon K. Pittman (The University of Manchester) , Kejing Zhang (The University of Manchester) , Gianni Vettese (The University of Manchester) , Kurt F. Smith (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) , Jonathan R. Lloyd (The University of Manchester)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Frontiers In Earth Science , VOL 8

State: Published (Approved)
Published: October 2020
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 17270

Open Access Open Access

Abstract: A non-axenic culture of Pseudanabaena catenata, a close relative of the bloom-forming cyanobacterium found in the high pH First Generation Magnox Storage Pond at the Sellafield Nuclear Facility, was supplemented with 1 mM of SrCl2, to determine its effect on the fate of Sr. The addition of 1 mM Sr to the P. catenata culture resulted in ∼16% reduction in the overall growth of the culture (OD600nm) and a 21% reduction in the concentration of chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) compared to those without Sr. The fate of Sr was assessed using a multi-technique approach. Inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy showed that virtually all of the Sr was removed from solution, while extracellular biomineral precipitates were analyzed using transmission electron microscopy analysis, and were shown to contain Sr, Ca, and S using energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy analysis. In addition, intracellular P-containing electron-dense features, likely to be polyphosphate bodies, were associated with the P. catenata cells and contained Sr. Bulk analysis of the cultures by X-ray diffraction showed the presence of Ca-containing strontianite whilst Extended X-ray Absorption Fine Structure analysis showed the presence of strontium phosphate minerals. The presence of Sr associated with intracellular polyphosphate was unexpected, and contrasts with other model photosynthetic systems in the literature that have highlighted carbonate biominerals as the dominant sink for Sr. Understanding the fate of Sr with microorganisms associated with the Spent Nuclear Fuel Ponds (SNFPs) is crucial to understanding the fate of radioactive 90Sr in such extreme environments, and could also suggest a potential remediation strategy for treatment of 90Sr contaminated waters from Spent Nuclear Fuel Ponds SNFPs and in contaminated aquatic systems.

Journal Keywords: first generation magnox storage pond; cyanobacteria; Sr behaviour; transmission electron microscopy; polyphosphate bodies; extended X-ray absorption fine structure

Diamond Keywords: Cyanobacteria; Biomineralisation

Subject Areas: Chemistry, Biology and Bio-materials, Environment

Instruments: B18-Core EXAFS

Added On: 16/12/2020 14:56


Discipline Tags:

Desertification & Pollution Earth Sciences & Environment Radioactive Materials Materials Science Nuclear Waste Life Sciences & Biotech

Technical Tags:

Spectroscopy X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy (XAS) Extended X-ray Absorption Fine Structure (EXAFS)