Brazilian Journal of Microbiology
Print version ISSN 1517-8382
SOUZA, Patrícia Mendes de et al. Copper influence on polyphosphate metabolism of Cunninghamella elegans. Braz. J. Microbiol. [online]. 2005, vol.36, n.4, pp. 315-320. ISSN 1517-8382. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1517-83822005000400002.
The aim of this work was to evaluate the physiological aspects of polyphosphate metabolism of Cunninghamella elegans grown in presence of copper. The growth profile was obtained by means of biomass yields, orthophosphate consumption, polyphosphate accumulation and phosphatases activities. The results revealed the influence of copper on the growth, observed by biomass yields. Orthophosphate consumption was faster in cells grown in the presence of copper. The presence of copper in the culture medium induced polyphosphate accumulation. The polyphosphate level was almost constant in the beginning of control culture growth, and could be related to the exponential growth phase. On the other hand, the copper treated cultures exhibited a significant reduction in the polyphosphate levels, indicating an active metabolization of the polymer. Acid phosphatase activity was not detected in the conditions studied, but alkaline phosphatase activity was significantly lower in the treated cultures. The results suggest the potential use of Cunninghamella elegans isolate in bioremediation and biosorption applied to environments polluted by copper.
Keywords : Cunninghamella elegans; copper; polyphosphate; phosphatases.