A Pb-resistant bacterial strain (named hereinafter Pb15) has been isolated from highly polluted marine sediments at the Sarno River mouth, Italy, using an enrichment culture to which Pb(II) 0.48 mmol l(-1) were added. 16S rRNA gene sequencing (Sanger) allowed assignment of the isolate to the genus Bacillus, with Bacillus pumilus as the closest species. The isolate is resistant to Pb(II) with a minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of 4.8 mmol l(-1) and is also resistant to Cd(II) and Mn(II) with MIC of 2.22 mmol l(-1) and 18.20 mmol l(-1), respectively. Inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES) showed that Pb inoculated in the growth medium is absorbed by the bacterial cells at removal efficiencies of 31.02% and 28.21% in the presence of 0.48 mmol l(-1) or 1.20 mmol l(-1) Pb(II), respectively. Strain Pb15 forms a brown and compact biofilm when grown in presence of Pb(II). Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) coupled with Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (SEM-EDS) confirm that the biofilm contains Pb, suggesting an active biosorption of this metal by the bacterial cells, sequestering 14% of inoculated Pb as evidenced by microscopic analyses. Altogether, these observations support evidence that strain Pb15 has potentials for being used in bioremediation of its native polluted sediments, with engineering solutions to be found in order to eliminate the adsorbed Pb before replacement of sediments in situ. (C) 2016 Elsevier B. V. All rights reserved.
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