Molecular and Morphological Characterization of Oil Polluted Microalgae

Document Type: Original Research Paper


1 Department of Petroleum Microbiology, Research Institute of Applied Science, ACECR, Shahid Beheshti university, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Microbiology, Karaj branch, Islamic Azad University, Karaj, Iran

3 Department of Biology, Gorgan branch, Islamic Azad University, Gorgan, Iran


Oil pollutions are widespread environmental pollutants. Most of the studies have been focused
on the biodegradation of these pollutions. Unfortunately, the information on the microflore of the polluted regions especially for microalgae is limited. In this research, we have focused on Masjed Soleiman; one of the most oil polluted cities in Iran. Soil and water samples were collected from different stations and seasons and their microalgae identified morphologically and molecularly. TPH, PAH and heavy metals of these stations were analyzed. The relationship between TPH contents and micro algal populations has also been considered. Results showed microalgae, present in these regions belonged to Cyanobacteria, Chlorophyta and Diatoms. Among them Phormidium sp. was the most dominant species that was found in all polluted regions. Microalgae
biomass, declined in high level polluted medium, whereas low levels of TPH showed no effect on microbial biomass. According to the results the isolated specimens have high resistance to environmental pollutions. So the type and frequency of the species, can lead us to estimate the amount of pollution in different sampling regions.