Due to recalcitrance of some pharmaceutically active compounds (PhACs), conventional wastewater treatment is not able to remove them effectively. Therefore, their occurrence in surface water and potential environmental impact has raised serious global concern. Biological transformation of these contaminants using white-rot fungi (WRF) and their oxidoreductase enzymes has been proposed as a low cost and environmentally friendly solution for water treatment. The removal performance of PhACs by a fungal culture is dependent on several factors, such as fungal species, the secreted enzymes, molecular structure of target compounds, culture medium composition, etc. In recent 20 years, numerous researchers tried to elucidate the removal mechanisms and the effects of important operational parameters such as temperature and pH on the enzymatic treatment of PhACs. This review summarizes and analyzes the studies performed on PhACs removal from spiked pure water and real wastewaters using oxidoreductase enzymes and the data related to degradation efficiencies of the most studied compounds. The review also offers an insight into enzymes immobilization, fungal reactors, mediators, degradation mechanisms and transformation products (TPs) of PhACs. In brief, higher hydrophobicity and having electron-donating groups, such as amine and hydroxyl in molecular structure leads to more effective degradation of PhACs by fungal cultures. For recalcitrant compounds, using redox mediators, such as syringaldehyde increases the degradation efficiency, however they may cause toxicity in the effluent and deactivate the enzyme. Immobilization of enzymes on supports can enhance the performance of enzyme in terms of reusability and stability. However, the immobilization strategy should be carefully selected to reduce the cost and enable regeneration. Still, further studies are needed to elucidate the mechanisms involved in enzymatic degradation and the toxicity levels of TPs and also to optimize the whole treatment strategy to have economical and technical competitiveness.
Environmental Pollution – Elsevier
Published: Mar 1, 2018
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