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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract - Bioremediation and Biodegradation

Use of Additives to Enhance the Removal of Phenols from Water Treated with Horseradish and Hydrogen Peroxide


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 32 No. 4, p. 1222-1227
    Received: Apr 29, 2002

    * Corresponding author(s): jmbollag@psu.edu
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  1. Masami Tonegawa,
  2. Jerzy Dec and
  3. Jean-Marc Bollag *
  1. Laboratory of Soil Biochemistry, Center for Bioremediation and Detoxification, The Pennsylvania State Univ., 129 Land and Water Building, University Park, PA 16802


Use of additives, such as polyethylene glycol (PEG), selected surfactants, chitosan gel, or activated carbon, has been shown to enhance enzymatic treatment of water polluted with organic compounds. In this study, additives were used to facilitate the removal of 2,4-dichlorophenol (2,4-DCP) from water using minced horseradish (Armoracia rusticana P. Gaertn. et al.) as a carrier of peroxidase activity. The specific objectives of the study were to (i) enhance the pollutant removal activity of minced horseradish by the addition of PEG and other additives (e.g., Tween 20, Triton X-100, and rhamnolipid); (ii) eliminate colored reaction products by the addition of chitosan; and (iii) eliminate color by amending treated water with activated carbon. The disappearance of 2,4-DCP in horseradish-treated water samples amended with PEG or various surfactants (75–90%) was greatly increased over that observed in nonamended samples (29%). The effect of PEG depended on its average molecular weight. As indicated by visible spectrophotometry, enclosing horseradish pieces between two sealed chitosan films completely eliminated colored reaction products; however, the decolorization was accompanied by a reduction in 2,4-DCP removal (from 95 to 60%). On the other hand, commercially available activated carbon completely removed colored reaction products from the treated water without reducing the removal efficiency. Based on the results obtained, it can be concluded that the use of additives may considerably improve the quality of wastewater treated by plant materials.

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Copyright © 2003. American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Soil Science SocietyPublished in J. Environ. Qual.32:1222–1227.