Affiliation: Department of Bioresources Engineering, CSIR-Institute of Minerals and Materials Technology (IMMT), Bhubaneswar-751013, India.
Over the past few decades, the upcoming scientific scenario of the ever growing area of biotechnology finds a successful application of some eco-diversified microorganisms which are employed for the recovery of metals from ores and other industrial wastes. A lot of mineral oxidizers and reducers are found in natural environments which involve a different mode of action for mineral oxidation and reduction. Mineral oxidizers are found in natural leaching environments such as acid mine drainage, dump disposal sites, tailing ponds and are mostly aerobic in nature while the reducers are found in environments under facultative anerobic or strictly anerobic conditions. Mineral Biotechnology is primarily aimed at the application of such mineral metal oxidizers and reducers for the development and advancement of a sustainable biotechnological industry in the mineral processing sector. Analyzing several aspects, the leaching microbes have a number of features in common that make them especially suitable for their role in mineral solubilization. This particular review focuses on such mineral oxidizing and reducing microorganisms, their mode of action and area of application towards development and growth of mineral biotechnological industry.