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Role Of Bacterial Chromate Reductase In Bioremediation Of Chromium-Containing Wastes

Satarupa Dey

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Chromium toxicity is a major environmental concern as it is the chief environmental pollutant released by paint, stainless steel, and mining industries. In nature, chromium exists in two stable valance states: Cr(VI) and Cr(III). Cr(VI) is highly toxic and soluble at neutral pH, whereas Cr(III) is insoluble at normal pH and is less toxic. Thus, it is essential to draw strategies for mitigation of Cr(VI), and microbial reduction of toxic Cr(VI) has been identified as a bioremediation technique not only to detoxify chromium but also to recover the non-toxic Cr(III) by physical means. Chromate reductase, the central enzyme involved in bioreduction of Cr(VI) to Cr(III) may be both intracellular as well as extracellular in nature. Most of the chromate reductase enzyme belongs to the oxidoreductase group such as nitroreductase, iron reductase, quinone reductase, hydrogenase, flavin reductase, as well as NAD(P)H-dependent reductase. Detailed analysis of the structure of the enzymes will help us in the suitable application of these enzymes in bioremediation of metal-contaminated wastes.