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The effects of biosorption and desorption on biodegradation were studied by using di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP) as a model pollutant of low solubility. Batch experiments were performed to measure the rate of DBP biodegradation in the presence and absence of sorptive biomass incapable of
its biodegradation. When the initial concentration of DBP in a batch reactor was lower than the solubility limit, biosorption before biodegradation decreased the biodegradation rate by lowering the soluble DBP concentration. When the DBP concentration was higher than the solubility limit,
biosorption before biodegradation increased the biodegradation rate because the desorption rate was much faster than the dissolution rate from the nonaqueous phase. An empirical model, which included a desorption/dissolution rate term, was successfully applied to describe the biodegradation
data in the absence of significant biosorption. The model was incapable of describing the data in the presence of significant biosorption because of the growth of the degrader on products released by the sorptive biomass.
Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year. Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.