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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  13 Nov 2020

13 Nov 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal BG.

Manifestations and environmental implications of microbially-induced calcium carbonate precipitation (MICP) by the cyanobacterium Dolichospermum flosaquae

Refat Abdel-Basset1, Elhagag Ahmed Hassan1, and Hans-Peter Grossart2,3 Refat Abdel-Basset et al.
  • 1Botany and Microbiology Department, Faculty of Science, Assiut University, 71516 Assiut (Egypt)
  • 2Dept. Experimental Limnology, Leibniz Institute for Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries, D-16775 Stechlin, Germany
  • 3Dept. of Biochemistry and Biology, Potsdam University, 14469 Potsdam, Germany

Abstract. The aim of this work is to explore the ability and magnitude of the temperate cyanobacterium Dolichospermum flosaquae in MICP (microbially-induced calcium carbonate precipitation). Environmentally, MICP controls the availability of calcium, carbon and phosphorus in freshwater lakes and simultaneously controls carbon exchange with the atmosphere. Cultures of flosaquae were grown in BG11 medium containing 0, 1, 1.5, 2 and 4 mg Ca2+ L−1, as cardinal concentrations previously reported in freshwater lakes, in addition to a control culture (BG11 containing 13 mg Ca2+ L−1). Growth (cell number, chlorophyll a, and protein content) of D. flosaquae was generally reduced by elevating calcium concentrations of the different salts used (chloride, acetate, or citrate). D. flosaquae seems able to perform MICP as carbonate alkalinity was sharply induced up to its highest level (six times that of the control) at a citrate concentration of 4 mg Ca2+ L−1. Calcium carbonate was formed at a pre-precipitation stage as the minimum pH necessary for precipitation (8.7) has been scarcely approached under such conditions. MICP took place mostly relying on photosynthesis and respiration, but not on urease activity, as urea was not supplemented in the growth media. However, D. flosaquae exhibited strong urease specific activity in in vitro assays (four times that of the control at 4 mg Ca2+ citrate L−1). Residual calcium exhibited its lowest value at 4 mg Ca2+ citrate L−1, coinciding with the highest alkalinity level. Consumed calcium was increasing with chlorophyll a content, but not with increasing cell numbers. The experiments should be repeated in a future study, but in the presence of urea, to evaluate the full potential of calcium carbonate precipitation of D. flosaquae, its dynamics and impact on biogeochemical cycles of calcium, carbon and phosphorus in freshwater lakes.

Refat Abdel-Basset et al.

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Refat Abdel-Basset et al.

Refat Abdel-Basset et al.


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Short summary
This work was planned and implemented to evaluate the capacity of the Cyanobacterium Dolichospermum flosaquae in microbially induced calcium carbonate precipitation (MICP), which in turn exerts numerous impacts in biogeochemistry of freshwater lakes. MICP is also a determinant of atmospheric carbon emission and eutrophication. Calcium citrate was the most inductive for MICP powered by photosynthesis. The results can be modeled for the implications of MICP in biogeochemical cycles of Ca, C & P.
This work was planned and implemented to evaluate the capacity of the Cyanobacterium...