Grasas y Aceites, Vol 69, No 1 (2018)

Extracellular laccase production and phenolic degradation by an olive mill wastewater isolate

R. Kumar
Shamir Research Institute, University of Haifa - Department of Biological Science, Birla Institute of Technology and Science, India

Y. Raizner
Shamir Research Institute, University of Haifa, Israel

L. I. Kruh
Department of Biotechnology Engineering, ORT Braude College, Israel

O. Menashe
Water Industry Engineering Department, Achi Racov Engineering School, Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee, Israel

H. Azaizeh
Institute of Applied Research, University of Haifa - Tel-Hai College, Department of Environmental Science, Israel

S. Kapur
Department of Biological Science, Birla Institute of Technology and Science, India

E. Kurzbaum
Shamir Research Institute, University of Haifa, Israel


Olive mill wastewater (OMWW) presents a challenge to the control of effluents due to the presence of a high organic load, antimicrobial agents (monomeric-polymeric phenols, volatile acids, polyalcohols, and tannins), salinity and acidity. In this study, the production of extracellular laccase, monomeric or polymeric phenol, from an OMWW isolate based on its ability to biodegrade phenols and gallic acid as a model of phenolic compounds in OMWW was investigated. Phylogenetic analysis of the 16S RNA gene sequences identified the bacterial isolate (Acinetobacter REY) as being closest to Acinetobacter pittii. This isolate exhibited a constitutive production of extracellular laccase with an activity of 1.5 and 1.3 U ml/L when supplemented with the inducers CuSO4 and CuSO4+phenols, respectively. Batch experiments containing minimal media supplemented with phenols or gallic acid as the sole carbon and energy source were performed in order to characterize their phenolic biodegradability. Acinetobacter REY was capable of biodegrading up to 200 mg/L of phenols and gallic acid both after 10 h and 72 h, respectively.


Acinetobacter REY; Biodegradation; Extracellular laccase; Olive mill waste water; Phenolic compounds

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