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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 841892, 12 pages
Research Article

Dissolution of Arsenic Minerals Mediated by Dissimilatory Arsenate Reducing Bacteria: Estimation of the Physiological Potential for Arsenic Mobilization

Laboratory of Environmental Pollution Analysis, Faculty of Biology, University of Warsaw, Miecznikowa 1, 02-096 Warsaw, Poland

Received 11 October 2013; Revised 2 January 2014; Accepted 16 January 2014; Published 2 March 2014

Academic Editor: Aiyagari Ramesh

Copyright © 2014 Drewniak Lukasz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The aim of this study was characterization of the isolated dissimilatory arsenate reducing bacteria in the context of their potential for arsenic removal from primary arsenic minerals through reductive dissolution. Four strains, Shewanella sp. OM1, Pseudomonas sp. OM2, Aeromonas sp. OM4, and Serratia sp. OM17, capable of anaerobic growth with As (V) reduction, were isolated from microbial mats from an ancient gold mine. All of the isolated strains: (i) produced siderophores that promote dissolution of minerals, (ii) were resistant to dissolved arsenic compounds, (iii) were able to use the dissolved arsenates as the terminal electron acceptor, and (iii) were able to use copper minerals containing arsenic minerals (e.g., enargite) as a respiratory substrate. Based on the results obtained in this study, we postulate that arsenic can be released from some As-bearing polymetallic minerals (such as copper ore concentrates or middlings) under reductive conditions by dissimilatory arsenate reducers in indirect processes.