Relationship of heme c, nitrogen loading capacity and temperature in anammox reactor

Haiyuan Ma, Yanlong Zhang, Yi Xue, Yuanfan Zhang, Yu You Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


The characteristic carmine red color due to heme proteins is always observed in enriched anammox biomass. Heme c is a very important co-factor participating the main metabolic reactions with catalytic and electron-transfer potential in the anammox bacteria, and is possible for use as an indicator to evaluate anammox performance. Knowledge of the relationship between the heme c concentration and the anammox reactor performance is, however, very limited available information is constrained at an operation temperature of 35 °C. In this study, we report the heme c concentration change along with nitrogen removal rate (NRR) in three anammox expanded granular sludge bed reactors operated at different temperatures (15, 25, 35 °C). The response of specific anammox activity (SAA) to temperature was revealed for biomass originating from three reactors. The results indicate a strong relationship between heme c concentration and NRR at different culture temperatures. The possibility of evaluating the anammox performance by combining heme c quantification and the temperature is revealed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)568-577
Number of pages10
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Apr 1


  • Anammox
  • Heme c
  • Nitrogen removal rate
  • Specific anammox activity
  • Temperature effect
  • “Ca. Kuenenia stuttgartiensis”


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