The potential for bacteria's bioremediation of toxic As(V) and As(III) in water, using new HPLC-ESI-MS method

Aviv Kaplan, Water Research Center, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel (

Aviv Kaplan1, Igal Gozlan1, Dror Avisar1, Shani Ben-David2, Micha Ilan2


1 Water Research Center, Porter school of the Environment and Earth Sciences, Faculty of Exact Sciences, Tel-Aviv University

2 School of Zoology, Faculty of Life Sciences, Tel-Aviv University


Arsenic is known as a very toxic metalloid which can severely pollute groundwater, with devastating effects on human population.

T. swinhoei is a marine sponge aquatic organism that contains a variety of microorganisms inside its body, and high concentrations of Arsen (As) are discovered regularly in it.

It is our belief that some bacteria, harbor inside the sponge body, are tolerant for arsenic high concentrations and even use it as an energy source. Those bacteria may perform a bioremediation process on arsenic species from As(V) to As(III) and vice versa.

A new HPLC-ESI-MS method was developed in order to differ the As(V) chemical species from the As(III). Unlike most of the common known methods - using ion exchange, ion pairing or HPLC-ICP-MS coupling - this method is simple and based on a porous graphitic carbon (PGC) stationary phase to separate both extremely polar analytes.

Combined with an original approach to reduce the disturbing NA+ ions from saline water samples, the method gives us the opportunity to study if a bioremediation is executed by the bacteria.

This method might be the basics for more developed and sensitive methods, allowing to investigate the presence and treatment of arsenic species in all kind of aqueous phases, including drinking water and groundwater. 


Short Biography of Presenting Author

Aviv holds a B.Sc in Geophysics and Chemistry from Tel-Aviv University and is currently a M.Sc Student at the Porter School of the environment and earth sciences, Tel-Aviv University.

Additionally, Aviv works as cheif technician of the hydrochemistry laboratory, responsible for analytical methods development, performing environmental studies and research for the Water Research Center and qualifies students to work with analytical instruments.

Aviv has more than 8 years experience developing analytical methods; 6 of which were at the analytical laboratory of TEVA pharmaceuticals R&D department. He is very knowledgeable in extraction, separation and detection methods of various environmental matrices including solids (waste and soil), biological and water (fresh, wastewater and sea water).

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