The influence of
xenobiotic compounds on environment and on living organisms has been reported
as an imminent public health problem. Among them we can list the contamination
by Alkanes present in petroleum, hydrocarbons and organic contaminant
substances from industrial effluents. Also, heavy metals are of particular
interest because of their persistence in the environment contaminating the food
webs. Among the innovative solutions for treatment of contaminated water and
soil is the use of biological materials like living or dead microorganisms.
Yeasts exhibit the ability to adapt to extreme condition such as temperature,
pH and levels of organic and inorganic contaminants that make them a potential
material to be used to remediate contaminated environment application. The goal
of this work was to search for yeast isolates capable to use n-hexadecane
(alkane hydrocarbon) as a primary carbon source and for those able to tolerate
high concentration of lead (Pb) within a collection of 90 isolates obtained
from the Sao Paulo Zoo composting system. The isolated yeast strains were
identified by mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) and by sequencing of the
ribosomal DNA (18S and D1/D2) conserved regions. We found that the collection
bares 23 isolates capable of utilizing n-hexadecane and one which is able to
tolerate high concentration of lead (Pb) with a high biosorption index compared
to the reference yeast strains (BY4742, PE-2, CAT-1 and BG-1). These results
confirm the initial hypothesis that the Sao Paulo Zoo composting is the source for diverse yeasts species with
biotechnological application potential.
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