Biointeraction of cerium oxide and neodymium oxide nanoparticles with pure culture Methylobacterium extorquens AM1

Maedeh Soleimanifar, Lucia Rodriguez-Freire

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Rare earth elements (REE) are valuable raw materials in our modern life. Extensive REE application from electronic devices to medical instruments and wind turbines, and non-uniform distribution of these resources around the world, make them strategically and economically important for countries. Current REE physical and chemical mining and recycling methods could have negative environmental consequences, and biologically-mediated techniques could be applied to overcome this issue. In this study, the bioextraction of cerium oxide and neodymium oxide nanoparticles (REE-NP) by a pure culture Methylobacterium extorquens AM1 (ATCC®14718™) was investigated in batch experiments. Results show that adding up to 1000 ppm CeO2 or Nd2O3 nanoparticles (REE-NP) did not seem to affect the bacterial growth over 14-days contact time. Effect of methylamine hydrochloride as an essential electron donor and carbon source for microbial oxidation and growth was also observed inasmuch as there was approximately no growth when it does not exist in the medium. Although very low concentrations of cerium and neodymium in the liquid phase were measured, concentrations of 45 μg/gcell Ce and 154 μg/gcell Nd could be extracted by M. extorquens AM1. Furthermore, SEM-EDS and STEM-EDS confirmed surface and intracellular accumulation of nanoparticles. These results confirmed the ability of M. extorquens to accumulate REE nanoparticles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number139113
StatePublished - Sep 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • General Chemistry
  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


  • Bioextraction
  • Biorecovery
  • Bioremediation
  • Nanoparticles
  • Pure culture
  • Rare earth elements


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