Bioaccumulation processes for mercury removal from saline waters by green, brown and red living marine macroalgae


Mercury is a very toxic metal that persists and accumulates in the living organisms present in the aquatic systems and its elimination is an urgent need. Two green (Ulva intestinalis and Ulva lactuca), brown (Fucus spiralis and Fucus vesiculosus), and red (Gracilaria sp. and Osmundea pinnatifida) marine macroalgae were tested for mercury removal from saline waters. The ability of each species was evaluated to the initial mercury concentrations of 50, 200, and 500 mu g dm(-3) along 72 h. In general, all species exhibited good performances, removing 80.9-99.9% from solutions with 50 mu g dm(-3), 79.3-98.6% from solutions with 200 mu g dm(-3), and 69.8-97.7% from solutions containing 500 mu g dm(-3) of mercury. Among the macroalgae, Ulva intestinalis showed the highest affinity to mercury and it presented an uptake ability up to 1888 mu g g(-1) of Hg(II) and bioconcentration factors up to 3823, which proved its promising potential on Hg removal.


Environmental Sciences


Fabre, E; Dias, M; Henriques, B; Viana, T; Ferreira, N; Soares, J; Pinto, J; Vale, C; Pinheiro-Torres, J; Silva, CM; Pereira, E

nossos autores


This work has been supported by the project No 46998_ N9ve-REE co-funded by Portugal 2020 program (PT2020), PO Centro, and European Structural and Investment Funds. E. Fabre acknowledges the financial support of CNPq (Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Cientifico e Tecnologico), Brazil. Bruno Henriques benefited from a Research contract (CEECIND/03511/2018) under the CEEC Individual 2018, funded by national funds (OE), through FCT -Fundacao para a Ciencia e a Tecnologia, I.P. Thanks are also due to the financial support to CICECO-Aveiro Institute of Materials (UID/CTM/50011/2019) and to CESAM (UID/AMB/50017), by FCT/MEC through national funds, and the co-funding by the FEDER, within the PT2020 Partnership Agreement and Compete 2020.

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