Aerobic and anaerobic ammonium-oxidising bacterial enrichment from municipal solid waste

  • S. Sri Shalini
  • J. Kurian
  • J. W. C. Wong
Original Paper


Leachate from the municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills contains high concentration of ammoniacal nitrogen that is a major toxic pollutant that has a great threat to environment. Among the processes available for the removal of ammoniacal nitrogen, one process is a combination of partial nitrification and anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox) process. It requires aerobic ammonium-oxidising bacteria (AOB) and anaerobic ammonium-oxidising bacteria (AnAOB). This paper presents the feasibility of enriching the AOB and AnAOB in 100-mL and 2.5-L batch reactors from fresh and mined MSW and leachate under aerobic and anaerobic conditions with varying feed-to-seed ratio. The AOB and AnAOB activity was monitored by measuring the intermediates such as hydroxylamine and hydrazine along with variations in ammoniacal nitrogen, nitrite nitrogen, and nitrate nitrogen concentrations in the reactor contents. The formation of intermediates such as hydroxylamine and hydrazine and ammoniacal nitrogen transformation data confirmed the enrichment of AOB and AnAOB. Further, AOB and AnAOB were validated by most probable number test and scanning electron microscopy analysis, respectively. DNA extraction, polymerase chain reaction amplification, and sequencing analysis authenticated the AnAOB as Candidatus Brocadia anammoxidans.


Bacterial enrichment Ammoniacal nitrogen removal Aerobic ammonium-oxidising bacteria Anammox bacteria Feed-to-seed ratio Candidatus Brocadia anammoxidans 



The support of the All India Council for Technical Education to carry out this study in the form of National Doctoral Fellowship to the corresponding author is gratefully acknowledged. The author wishes to thank Dr. Ammaiyappan Selvam and Dr. Su Yun Xu, Hong Kong Baptist University for their help in the molecular analysis of the bacteria.

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Islamic Azad University (IAU) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Environmental StudiesAnna UniversityChennaiIndia
  2. 2.Department of BiologyHong Kong Baptist UniversityKowloon TongHong Kong

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