Bioleaching of fly ash by the tropical marine yeast, Yarrowia lipolytica NCIM 3589

Ashok Bankar, Mark Winey, Divya Prakash, Ameeta Ravi Kumar, Suresh Gosavi, Balu Kapadnis, Smita Zinjarde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Fly ash collected from an Indian thermal power plant was characterised by scanning electron microscope (SEM)-energy dispersive spectrometer, X-ray diffraction and energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence analysis. The effect of fly ash on the growth and morphology of a metal-tolerant tropical marine yeast, Yarrowia lipolytica NCIM 3589, was studied. The growth of the yeast was unaffected by the presence 0.1, 0.2 or 0.3 % fly ash although the surface-to-volume ratio decreased. The yeast formed biofilms on immobilized fly ash as evidenced by SEM observations. The organism produced citric acid and additional extracellular proteins in the presence of fly ash. Leaching of metals from fly ash by Y. lipolytica was compared with chemical leaching by citric acid. Yeast cells were most effective in leaching Cu (59.41 %) although other metals (Zn, Ni, Cu and Cr) were also extracted. Transmission electron microscope images showed the deposition of metals at the cell wall, cell membrane and in the cytoplasm. This paper thus reports a potential application of Y. lipolytica for removal of different metals from solid waste material (fly ash).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2205-2217
Number of pages13
JournalApplied Biochemistry and Biotechnology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 1 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Accumulation
  • Fly ash
  • Metal extraction
  • Yarrowia lipolytica

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology


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