Dr Luong Nguyen was trained at University of Wollongong in Environmental Engineering. His Master and PhD focused on the treatment of trace organic contaminants (i.e. PPCPs, pesticides, industrial chemicals) in biological processes, including activated sludge, membrane bioreactor, enzymatic membrane reactor and fungal bioreactor.
He held a postdoctoral research position at the Advanced Environmental Biotechnology Centre in Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He investigated the impact of PPCPs on activated sludge microbial community and developed enrichment and isolation methods to retrieve bacterial strains from activated sludge with capability to degrade PPCPs.
Dr. Nguyen’s overall aim is to improve sustainability through research and technology development in the areas of waste and wastewater treatment with a focus on the recovery of water and the production of renewable energy and chemical precursors.
His current research is to disentangle the complexities of microbiomes in anaerobic digestion and co-digestion systems to facilitate genome-driven process design. This effort will enhance our understanding and control of biological wastewater and sludge treatment processes.
Can supervise: YES
- Anaerobic digestion and co-digestion
- Microbial ecology in wastewater treatment process
- Genomic driven process design
- Bioreactor design and operation
- Environmental Biotechnology
- Water and wasteater treatment processes
Chapple, A, Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Dosseto, A, Rashid, MHO, Oh, S, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2019, 'Impact of inorganic salts on degradation of bisphenol A and diclofenac by crude extracellular enzyme from Pleurotus ostreatus', Biocatalysis and Biotransformation, vol. 37, no. 1, pp. 10-17.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
© 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group This study investigated the influence of inorganic salts on enzymatic activity and the removal of trace organic contaminants (TrOCs) by crude laccase from the white-rot fungus Pleurotus ostreatus. A systematic analysis of 15 cations and anions from common inorganic salts was presented. Laccase activity was not inhibited by monovalent cations (i.e. Na + , NH 4 + , K + ), while the presence of divalent and trivalent cations showed variable impact – from negligible to complete inhibition – of both laccase activity and its TrOC removal performance. Of interest was the observation of discrepancy between residual laccase activity and TrOC removal in the presence of some ions. Mg 2+ had negligible impact on residual laccase activity but significant impact on TrOC removal. Conversely, F showed greater impact on residual laccase activity than on TrOC removal. This observation indicated different impacts of the interfering ions on the interaction between laccase and TrOCs as compared to that between laccase and the reagent used to measure its activity, implicating that residual laccase activity may not always be an accurate indicator of TrOC removal. The degree of impact of halides was in the order of F > I > Br > Cl . Particularly, the tolerance of the tested laccase to Cl has important implications for a range of industrial applications.
Nguyen, LN, Nghiem, LD, Pramanik, BK & Oh, S 2019, 'Cometabolic biotransformation and impacts of the anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac on activated sludge microbial communities', Science of the Total Environment, vol. 657, pp. 739-745.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
© 2018 Elsevier B.V. This study evaluated the removal of diclofenac (DCF) in activated sludge and its long-term exposure effects on the function and structure of the microbial community. Activated sludge could remove <50% of 50 g/L DCF. The removal decreased significantly to below 15% when DCF concentrations increased to 500 and 5000 g/L. Quantitative assessment of the fate of DCF showed that its main removal routes were biodegradation (21%) and adsorption (7%), with other abiotic removals being insignificant (<5%). The biodegradation occurred through cometabolic mechanisms. DCF exposure in the range of 50–5000 g/L did not disrupt the major functions of the activated sludge ecosystem (e.g. biomass yield and heterotrophic activity) over two months of DCF exposure. Consistently, 16S rRNA gene-based community analysis revealed that the overall community diversity (e.g. species richness and diversity) and structure of activated sludge underwent no significant alterations. The analysis did uncover a significant increase in several genera, Nitratireductor, Asticcacaulis, and Pseudacidovorax, which gained competitive advantages under DCF exposure. The enrichment of Nitratireductor, Asticcacaulis, and Pseudacidovorax genus might contribute to DCF biodegradation and emerge as a potential microbial niche for the removal of DCF.
Nguyen, LN & Oh, S 2019, 'Impacts of antiseptic cetylpyridinium chloride on microbiome and its removal efficiency in aerobic activated sludge', International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation, vol. 137, pp. 23-29.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
This study evaluated short- and long-term exposure of activated sludge (AS) microbiome to cetylpyridinium chloride (CPC), a quaternary ammonium compound widely used as biocidal additive or cationic surfactant. Toxicity assay in batch mode showed that CPC (50 g L1) inhibited cell growth. However, in a continuous reactor, CPC concentration in the range of 50–500 g L1 did not result in any observable impact on the biological activities of the AS microbiome. Similarly, 16S rRNA gene-based community profiling revealed that CPC had no observable impact on microbial diversity. At the phylogenetic structure, Rhodobacter (15 ± 7% of the total) and Asticcacaulis (9 ± 3%) were the only two phyla with increasing population in the 500 g L1-exposed reactors. This was also supported by an observation of no major change in the community structure. The reactors could remove >60% of CPC at initial concentrations of 50–500 g L1, primarily by adsorption and biodegradation. The enrichment of Rhodobacter and Asticcacaulis genus might contribute to CPC biodegradation and emerge as a potential microbial niche for the removal of CPC.
Nguyen, AQ, Nguyen, LN, Phan, HV, Galway, B, Bustamante, H & Nghiem, LD 2019, 'Effects of operational disturbance and subsequent recovery process on microbial community during a pilot-scale anaerobic co-digestion', INTERNATIONAL BIODETERIORATION & BIODEGRADATION, vol. 138, pp. 70-77.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Nghiem, LD, Pramanik, BK & Oh, S 2019, 'Cometabolic biotransformation and impacts of the anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac on activated sludge microbial communities', SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT, vol. 657, pp. 739-745.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Keerthisinghe, TP, Nguyen, LN, Kwon, EE & Oh, S 2019, 'Antiseptic chlorhexidine in activated sludge: Biosorption, antimicrobial susceptibility, and alteration of community structure', Journal of Environmental Management, vol. 237, pp. 629-635.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
© 2019 Elsevier Ltd Chlorhexidine (CHX) is a broad-spectrum antimicrobial, which may pose environmental health risks. This study examined the removal potential and the mechanisms regulating the fate of CHX in activated sludge (AS). Bioreactors inoculated with AS removed 74 ± 8% and 81 ± 6% of CHX at steady state while receiving 0.5 and 1 mg/L CHX, respectively. Analysis of the removal pathways showed that biosorption, rather than biological breakdown or other abiotic losses, largely (>70%) regulated the removal of CHX. 16S rRNA gene-based analysis revealed that CHX selected for Luteolibacter (4.3–10.1-fold change) and Runella (6.2–14.1-fold change) with potential multi-drug resistance mechanisms (e.g., efflux pumps). In contrast, it significantly reduced core members (Comamonadaceae and Flavobacteriaceae) of AS, playing a key role in contaminant removal and floc formation directly associated with the performance of WWTPs (e.g., wastewater effluent quality). Antimicrobial susceptibility testing showed that 0.4–1.3 mg/L of CHX can be sublethal to AS. Our work provided new insights into the fate of CHX in urban waste streams and the potential toxicity and effects on the structure and function of AS, which has practical implications for the management of biological WWTPs treating CHX.
Nguyen, LN, Johir, MAH, Commault, A, Bustamante, H, Aurisch, R, Lowrie, R & Nghiem, LD 2019, 'Impacts of mixing on foaming, methane production, stratification and microbial community in full-scale anaerobic co-digestion process', BIORESOURCE TECHNOLOGY, vol. 281, pp. 226-233.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Nguyen, L, Nghiem, DL & Oh, S 2018, 'Aerobic biotransformation of the antibiotic ciprofloxacin by Bradyrhizobium sp. isolated from activated sludge', Chemosphere, vol. 211, pp. 600-607.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Nguyen, AQ, Wickham, R, Nguyen, LN, Phan, HV, Galway, B, Bustamante, H & Nghiem, LD 2018, 'Impact of anaerobic co-digestion between sewage sludge and carbon-rich organic waste on microbial community resilience', ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE-WATER RESEARCH & TECHNOLOGY, vol. 4, no. 12, pp. 1956-1965.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, McDonald, JA, Khan, SJ, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2017, 'Continuous transformation of chiral pharmaceuticals in enzymatic membrane bioreactors for advanced wastewater treatment', WATER SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, vol. 76, no. 7, pp. 1816-1826.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Asif, MB, Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2017, 'Integration of an enzymatic bioreactor with membrane distillation for enhanced biodegradation of trace organic contaminants', International Biodeterioration and Biodegradation, vol. 124, pp. 73-81.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
© 2017 Elsevier Ltd A novel membrane distillation – enzymatic membrane bioreactor (MD-EMBR) system was developed for efficient degradation of trace organic contaminants (TrOCs). Degradation of five TrOCs, namely carbamazepine, oxybenzone, diclofenac, atrazine and sulfamethoxazole was examined using two commercially available laccases (from Trametes versicolor and Aspergillus oryzae). The MD system ensured complete retention ( > 99%) of both enzyme and TrOCs. Of particular interest was that the complete retention of the TrOCs resulted in high TrOC degradation by both laccases. Oxybenzone and diclofenac degradation in the MD-EMBR ranged between 80 and 99%. Compared to previously developed EMBRs, as much as 40% improvement in the removal of resistant non-phenolic TrOCs (e.g., carbamazepine) was observed. Laccase from A. oryzae demonstrated better TrOC degradation and enzymatic stability. With the addition of redox mediators, namely 1-hydroxybenzotriazole (HBT) or violuric acid (VA), TrOC degradation was improved by 10–20%. This is the first demonstration of a laccase-based high retention membrane bioreactor for enhanced biodegradation of TrOCs.
Ji, C, Nguyen, LN, Hou, J, Hai, FI & Chen, V 2017, 'Direct immobilization of laccase on titania nanoparticles from crude enzyme extracts of P. ostreatus culture for micro-pollutant degradation', SEPARATION AND PURIFICATION TECHNOLOGY, vol. 178, pp. 215-223.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Ashe, B, Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Lee, D-J, van de Merwe, JP, Leusch, FDL, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2016, 'Impacts of redox-mediator type on trace organic contaminants degradation by laccase: Degradation efficiency, laccase stability and effluent toxicity', INTERNATIONAL BIODETERIORATION & BIODEGRADATION, vol. 113, pp. 169-176.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Hai, FI, Nguyen, LN, Nghiem, LD, Liao, BQ, Koyuncu, I & Price, WE 2016, 'Trace Organic Contaminants Removal by Combined Processes for Wastewater Reuse', Handbook of Environmental Chemistry, vol. 45, pp. 39-77.View/Download from: Publisher's site
© 2016 Springer International Publishing Switzerland. The term trace organic contaminant (TrOC) refers to a diverse and expanding array of natural as well as anthropogenic substances including industrial chemicals, chemicals used in households, compounds and their metabolites excreted by people and by-products formed during wastewater and drinking-water treatment processes. Activated sludge-based processes (e.g. membrane bioreactor) are environmentally friendly approaches to wastewater treatment. However, conventional biological treatment alone may not be effective for all TrOCs that are known to occur in municipal and industrial wastewater. The low removal efficiency of biologically persistent and hydrophilic TrOCs necessitates the integration of MBR with other membrane-based and physicochemical processes to ensure adequate removal of TrOCs. Because MBRs can produce effluent with low turbidity and bulk organic content, significant synergy can be realised when it is integrated with other advanced treatment processes. In addition, given the small physical footprint of the MBR process, it is possible to deploy these integrated systems for decentralised water recycling applications. This chapter provides a brief overview of the integration of advanced treatment processes including activated carbon adsorption, advanced oxidation processes and high retention membranes (e.g. nanofiltration and reverse osmosis) with MBR for TrOC removal.
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Dosseto, A, Richardson, C, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2016, 'Continuous adsorption and biotransformation of micropollutants by granular activated carbon-bound laccase in a packed-bed enzyme reactor', BIORESOURCE TECHNOLOGY, vol. 210, pp. 108-116.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, van de Merwe, JP, Hai, FI, Leusch, FDL, Kang, J, Price, WE, Roddick, F, Magram, SF & Nghiem, LD 2016, 'Laccase-syringaldehyde-mediated degradation of trace organic contaminants in an enzymatic membrane reactor: Removal efficiency and effluent toxicity', BIORESOURCE TECHNOLOGY, vol. 200, pp. 477-484.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Price, WE, Kang, J, Leusch, FDL, Roddick, F, van de Merwe, JP, Magram, SF & Nghiem, LD 2015, 'Degradation of a broad spectrum of trace organic contaminants by an enzymatic membrane reactor: Complementary role of membrane retention and enzymatic degradation', INTERNATIONAL BIODETERIORATION & BIODEGRADATION, vol. 99, pp. 115-122.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Price, WE, Leusch, FDL, Roddick, F, McAdam, EJ, Magram, SF & Nghiem, LD 2014, 'Continuous biotransformation of bisphenol A and diclofenac by laccase in an enzymatic membrane reactor', INTERNATIONAL BIODETERIORATION & BIODEGRADATION, vol. 95, pp. 25-32.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Kang, J, Leusch, FDL, Roddick, F, Magram, SF, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2014, 'Enhancement of trace organic contaminant degradation by crude enzyme extract from Trametes versicolor culture: Effect of mediator type and concentration', JOURNAL OF THE TAIWAN INSTITUTE OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERS, vol. 45, no. 4, pp. 1855-1862.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Nghiem, LD, Kang, J, Price, WE, Park, C & Yamamoto, K 2014, 'Enhancement of removal of trace organic contaminants by powdered activated carbon dosing into membrane bioreactors', JOURNAL OF THE TAIWAN INSTITUTE OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERS, vol. 45, no. 2, pp. 571-578.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Yang, S, Kang, J, Leusch, FDL, Roddick, F, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2014, 'Removal of pharmaceuticals, steroid hormones, phytoestrogens, UV-filters, industrial chemicals and pesticides by Trametes versicolor: Role of biosorption and biodegradation', INTERNATIONAL BIODETERIORATION & BIODEGRADATION, vol. 88, pp. 169-175.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Price, WE, Leusch, FD, Roddick, F, Ngo, H, Guo, W, Magram, SF & Nghiem, LD 2014, 'The effects of mediator and granular activated carbon addition on degradation of trace organic contaminants by an enzymatic membrane reactor', Bioresource Technology, vol. 167, pp. 169-177.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
The removal of four recalcitrant trace organic contaminants (TrOCs), namely carbamazepine, diclofenac, sulfamethoxazole and atrazine by laccase in an enzymatic membrane reactor (EMR) was studied. Laccases are not effective for degrading non-phenolic compounds; nevertheless, 2255% removal of these four TrOCs was achieved by the laccase EMR. Addition of the redox-mediator syringaldehyde (SA) to the EMR resulted in a notable dose-dependent improvement (1545%) of TrOC removal affected by inherent TrOC properties and loading rates. However, SA addition resulted in a concomitant increase in the toxicity of the treated effluent. A further 1425% improvement in aqueous phase removal of the TrOCs was consistently observed following a one-off dosing of 3 g/L granular activated carbon (GAC). Mass balance analysis reveals that this improvement was not due solely to adsorption but also enhanced biodegradation. GAC addition also reduced membrane fouling and the SA-induced toxicity of the effluent.
Yang, S, Hai, FI, Nghiem, LD, Nguyen, LN, Roddick, F & Price, WE 2013, 'Removal of bisphenol A and diclofenac by a novel fungal membrane bioreactor operated under non-sterile conditions', INTERNATIONAL BIODETERIORATION & BIODEGRADATION, vol. 85, pp. 483-490.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Kang, J, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2013, 'Removal of emerging trace organic contaminants by MBR-based hybrid treatment processes', INTERNATIONAL BIODETERIORATION & BIODEGRADATION, vol. 85, pp. 474-482.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Yang, S, Kang, J, Leusch, FDL, Roddick, F, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2013, 'Removal of trace organic contaminants by an MBR comprising a mixed culture of bacteria and white-rot fungi', BIORESOURCE TECHNOLOGY, vol. 148, pp. 234-241.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Kang, J, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2013, 'Coupling granular activated carbon adsorption with membrane bioreactor treatment for trace organic contaminant removal: Breakthrough behaviour of persistent and hydrophilic compounds', JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT, vol. 119, pp. 173-181.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Hai, F, Kang, J, Nghiem, LD, Price, WE, Guo, W, Ngo, H & Tung, K 2013, 'Comparison between sequential and simultaneous application of activated carbon with membrane bioreactor for trace organic contaminant removal', Bioresource Technology, vol. 130, pp. 412-417.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
The removal efficiency of 22 selected trace organic contaminants by sequential application of granular activated carbon (GAC) and simultaneous application of powdered activated carbon (PAC) with membrane bioreactor (MBR) was compared in this study. Both sequential application of GAC following MBR treatment (MBRâGAC) and simultaneous application of PAC within MBR (PACâMBR) achieved improved removal (over 95%) of seven hydrophilic and biologically persistent compounds, which were less efficiently removed by MBR-only treatment (negligible to 70%). However, gradual breakthrough of these compounds occurred over an extended operation period. Charged compounds, particularly, fenoprop and diclofenac, demonstrated the fastest breakthrough (complete and 50â70%, in MBRâGAC and PACâMBR, respectively). Based on a simple comparison from the long-term performance stability and activated carbon usage points of view, PACâMBR appears to be a better option than MBRâGAC treatment.
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Kang, J, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2012, 'Removal of trace organic contaminants by a membrane bioreactor-granular activated carbon (MBR-GAC) system', BIORESOURCE TECHNOLOGY, vol. 113, pp. 169-173.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Nguyen, LN, Nguyen, AQ & Nghiem, LD 2019, 'Microbial Community in Anaerobic Digestion System: Progression in Microbial Ecology' in Bui, X-T, Chiemchaisri, C, Fujioka, T & Varjani, S (eds), Water and Wastewater Treatment Technologies, Springer Singapore, pp. 331-355.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Anaerobic digestion (AD) is a biochemical process that involves four microorganism groups, namely, hydrolyzers, acidogens, acetogens, and methanogens. These groups function in syntrophy and have intra-dependent metabolic pathways. Changes in one group (e.g., over-/underexpressed population and function) can alter this chain of anaerobic process and consequently AD performance. With recent progress in culture-independent techniques, an array of previously unknown and uncultured microorganisms has been recently uncovered in the AD process. Discoveries on the diversity and structure of the AD microbial community can provide new information on digester stability and performance (e.g., biogas production). This chapter provided a critical analysis of the current knowledge on the AD microbial community, focusing on the factors affecting microbial community and the relationship between microbial community and AD performance. Gaining a better understanding of microbial ecology could be the key for greater AD efficiency and biogas production capacity.
Hai, FI, Alturki, A, Nguyen, LN, Price, WE & Nghiem, LD 2016, 'Removal of trace organic contaminants by integrated membrane processes for water reuse applications' in Green Technologies for Sustainable Water Management, pp. 533-578.View/Download from: Publisher's site
© 2016 American Society of Civil Engineers. This chapter discusses advanced technologies for the removal of emerging trace organic contaminants (TrOCs) from wastewater for reuse purposes. In particular, integrated membrane processes for TrOC removal are delineated. In the environment, TrOCs may be present as a mixture of various compounds and their transformation products. Mixtures of TrOCs may impose a more complicated effect when compared to that of a single compound. Water recycling is a pragmatic approach to mitigate or solve the problems of water supply. There is a growing interest in using nontraditional water resources by means of water reclamation and water recycling for long-term sustainability. This chapter explains the removal of TrOCs by existing and advanced treatment processes. Some of the processes include activated carbon adsorption, high-pressure membrane filtration, advanced oxidation processes, and enzymatic degradation. The biomass feature is an important factor for TrOC removal in membrane bioreactor (MBR).
Nguyen, LN, Hai, FI, Nghiem, LD, Kang, J & Price, WE 2010, 'Coupling powdered activated carbon (PAC) adsorption with membrane bioreactor (MBR) treatment for enhanced removal of trace organics', EUROMEMBRANE CONFERENCE 2012, Euromembrane Conference, ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV, London, ENGLAND, pp. 1410-1411.View/Download from: Publisher's site