Nitrate and nitrite bacterial reduction at alkaline pH and high nitrate concentrations, comparison of acetate versus dihydrogen as electron donors - INSA Toulouse - Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Toulouse Access content directly
Journal Articles Journal of Environmental Management Year : 2021

Nitrate and nitrite bacterial reduction at alkaline pH and high nitrate concentrations, comparison of acetate versus dihydrogen as electron donors

Abstract

This study assesses bacterial denitrification at alkaline pH, up to 12, and high nitrate concentration, up to 400 mM. Two types of electron donors organic (acetate) and inorganic (dihydrogen) were compared. With both types of electron donors, nitrite reduction was the key step, likely to increase the pH and lead to nitrite accumulation. Firstly, an acclimation process was used: nitrate was progressively increased in three cultures set at pH 9, 10, or 11. This method allowed to observe for the first time nitrate reduction up to pH 10 and 100 mM nitrate with dihydrogen, or up to pH 10 and 400 mM nitrate with acetate. Nitrate reduction kinetics were faster in the presence of acetate. To investigate further the impact of the type of electron donor, a transition from acetate to dihydrogen was tested, and the pH evolution was modelled. Denitrification with dihydrogen strongly increases the pH while with acetate the pH evolution depends on the initial pH. The main difference is the production of acidifying CO2 during the acetate oxidation. Finally, the use of long duration cultures with a highly alkaline pH allowed a nitrate reduction up to pH 11.5 with acetate. However, no reduction was possible in hydrogenotrophy as it would have increased the pH further. Instead, bacteria used organic matter from inoculum to reduce nitrate at pH 11.5. Therefore, considering bacterial denitrification in a context of alkaline pH and high nitrate concentration an organic electron donor such as acetate is advantageous.
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Dates and versions

hal-03180758 , version 1 (20-11-2021)

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Pierre Albina, Nadège Durban, Alexandra Bertron, Achim Albrecht, Jean-Charles Robinet, et al.. Nitrate and nitrite bacterial reduction at alkaline pH and high nitrate concentrations, comparison of acetate versus dihydrogen as electron donors. Journal of Environmental Management, 2021, 280, pp.111859. ⟨10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.111859⟩. ⟨hal-03180758⟩
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