Oxalate production by fungi: significance in geomycology, biodeterioration and bioremediation

Author: 

Geoffrey Michael Gadd, Jaleh Bahri-Esfahani, Qianwei Li, Young Joon Rhee, Zhan Wei, Marina Fomina, Xinjin Liang
Fungal Biology Reviews Volume 28, Issues 2–3, October 2014, Pages 36–55

Abstract: 

Oxalate is a key metabolite that plays a significant role in many metal and mineral transformations mediated by fungi. Metal and mineral transformations are central to geomycological processes including nutrient and element cycling, rock, mineral and metal transformations, bioweathering and mycogenic biomineral formation. Some fungal transformations have potential applications in environmental biotechnology, e.g. metal and radionuclide leaching, biorecovery, detoxification and bioremediation, and in the production or deposition of biominerals or metallic elements with catalytic or other properties. Metal and mineral transformations may also result in adverse effects when these processes result in biodeterioration of natural and synthetic materials, rock and mineral-based building materials (e.g. concrete), biocorrosion of metals, alloys and related substances, and adverse effects on radionuclide speciation, mobility and containment. Oxalate is ubiquitous in all these contexts. This paper seeks to draw together salient information from environmental and applied research to emphasize the importance of oxalate in geomycology, biodeterioration, environmental biotechnology and bioremediation.