Physiological and transcriptome profiling of Chlorella sorokiniana: A study on azo dye wastewater decolorization

Tarbajova V., Kolackova M., Chaloupsky P., Dobesova M., Capal P., Pilat Z., Samek O., Zemanek P., Svec P., Sterbova D.S., Vaculovicova M., Richtera L., P´erez-de- Mora A., Adam V., Huska D.

Abstract: Over decades, synthetic dyes have become increasingly dominated by azo dyes posing a significant environmental risk due to their toxicity. Microalgae-based systems may offer an alternative for treatment of azo dye effluents to conventional physical-chemical methods. Here, microalgae were tested to decolorize industrial azo dye wastewater (ADW). Chlorella sorokiniana showed the highest decolorization efficiency in a preliminary screening test. Subsequently, the optimization of the experimental design resulted in 70% decolorization in a photobioreactor. Tolerance of this strain was evidenced using multiple approaches (growth and chlorophyll content assays, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and antioxidant level measurements). Raman microspectroscopy was employed for the quantification of ADW-specific compounds accumulated by the microalgal biomass. Finally, RNA-seq revealed the transcriptome profile of C. sorokiniana exposed to ADW for 72 h. Activated DNA repair and primary metabolism provided sufficient energy for microalgal growth to overcome the adverse toxic conditions. Furthermore, several transporter genes, oxidoreductases-, and glycosyltransferasesencoding genes were upregulated to effectively sequestrate and detoxify the ADW. This work demonstrates the potential utilization of C. sorokiniana as a tolerant strain for industrial wastewater treatment, emphasizing the regulation of its molecular mechanisms to cope with unfavorable growth conditions.
DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2023.132450
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IEB authors: Petr Cápal