Research Fellows Directory
Dr Pallavee Srivastava
My research interest lies primarily in the field of metal microbe interaction. Having carried out work on microbial synthesis of metal based nanomaterials, I also have a keen interest in utilizing these organisms at field scale for bioremediation of metal contaminated sites and recovery of the contaminating elements. More specifically, my aim is to provide a new insight into the bioremediation and bio-recovery of selenium (Se) from a Se contaminated site.
Se is a valuable element that finds applications in manufacturing of electronics, glass and alloys. It also has biological significance as it is an essential micronutrient for both macro and microorganisms. However, it becomes toxic to the organisms when present at higher concentrations. Certain microorganisms can convert the toxic Se species to non-toxic form through dissimilatory reduction, which may then be bio-recovered as valuable resource. As most of the studies on the reduction of Se species have been carried out at lab-scale on single species, they cannot be extended at field scale. This is due to the presence of a microbial community at most of the field sites as opposed to presence of a single species. This essentially limits the understanding of the process. We aim to understand and control the role of microbial community structure and function on Se reduction and Se-nanoparticle generation during a controlled Se bioremediation and bio-recovery experiment in a natural field based setting at Vale Ni refinery Wales by utilizing state-of-the-art genomic and isotopic techniques. This research endeavour would potentially help us understand and implement environmental clean-up and generate value from waste.
Interests and expertise (Subject groups)