Sustainable Removal of Microplastics and Natural Organic Matter from Water by Coagulation-Flocculation with Protein Amyloid Fibrils
- Journal Article
Water contamination is a global threat due to its damaging effects on the environment and human health. Water pollution by microplastics (MPs), dissolved natural organic matter (NOM), and other turbid particles is ubiquitous in water treatment. Here, we introduce lysozyme amyloid fibrils as a novel natural bio-flocculant and explore their ability to flocculate and precipitate the abovementioned undesired colloidal objects. Thanks to their positively charged surface in a very broad range of pH, lysozyme amyloid fibrils show an excellent turbidity removal efficiency of 98.2 and 97.9% for dispersed polystyrene MPs and humic acid (HA), respectively. Additionally, total organic carbon measurements confirm these results by exhibiting removal efficiencies of 93.4 and 61.9% for purifying water from dispersed MPs and dissolved HA, respectively. The comparison among amyloid fibrils, commercial flocculants (FeCl3 and polyaluminumchloride), and native lysozyme monomers points to the superiority of amyloid fibrils at the same dosage and sedimentation time. Furthermore, the turbidity of pristine and MP-spiked wastewater and lake water decreased after the treatment by amyloid fibrils, validating their coagulation-flocculation performance under natural conditions. All these results demonstrate lysozyme amyloid fibrils as an appropriate natural bio-flocculant for removing dispersed MPs, NOM, and turbid particles from water. Show more
Journal / seriesEnvironmental Science & Technology
Pages / Article No.
Subjectcoagulation-flocculation; microplastics; natural organic matter; water purification; amyloid fibrils
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