Project description

Heavy metal ions play key roles in modern industries, such as automobile manufacturing, military, electric power, metallurgy, printing, construction, and others.

However inappropriate disposal of heavy metal ions has become an increasing environmental concern largely due to its non-degradable nature and physiological toxicity. Heavy metal pollution poses a non-negligible risk to people’s health, particularly to children, and is a public health issue on a global scale now.

Although several physical-chemical methods are available for heavy metal ions adsorption and recovery, the most current techniques are incapable of selective recovery or separation of the adsorbed metal ions, limiting their applications.

Herein, we present an innovative total solution named “Metallosniper” to deal with the heavy metals in waste water. We selected lead, gold and uranium as the representatives of toxic metals, precious metals and energy metals. At first, We characterized Pveg promoter which is the constitutive promoter from B. subtilis (iGEM08_Imperial_College:Part:BBa_K143053:Design) by expressing the EGFP fused biofilm or spore coat related proteins. Then we composited them with some special metalloproteins for selective binding target heavy metals. Furthermore, a kind of adhesion material was used for engineered Bacillus subtilis cells immobilization, and then we applied the adhesion material containing engineered bacteria in a novo designed device for efficient recovery of heavy metals from waste water.

You can click here to watch on YouTube.