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Bioaccumulation Of Mercury By Bacteria Isolated From Small Scale Gold Mining Tailings In Lombok, Indonesia

Siska Nurfitriani, E. Arisoesilaningsih, Y. Nuraini, E. Handayanto
Published 2020 · Environmental Science

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The activity of small scale gold mining (ASGM) in Indonesia has expanded to Lombok Island, West Nusa Tenggara. The use of mercury (Hg) and the traditional mining process cause that the ASGM tailings waste still contains Hg. The tailings waste is piled up near paddy fields and residential areas so that it has the potential to pollute the environment. This study aimed at isolating the bacteria that can accumulate Hg from the ASGM tailings in Lombok. The tailing samples were taken from Sekotong, Pujut, and Jonggat Districts, Lombok. The bacteria that have been isolated from the tailing samples were tested for their ability of Hg hemolysis resistance, and Hg bioaccumulation. Three bacteria with the highest Hg bioaccumulation ability were identified using the 16S rDNA gene squad. The results showed that out of 32 bacterial isolates, 27 isolates were found to be tolerant to Hg. Two bacterial isolates that were able to accumulate the highest amount of Hg and were identified as Fictibacillus nanhainensis (SKT-B) 82.25% and Bacillus toyonensis (PJM-F1) 81.21%. This study proved that the bacteria isolated from ASGM tailings have a great potential to be used as Hg bioaccumulation agents.
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