Oscillatoria sp. H1 (Cyanobacteria, microalgae) isolated from Mogan Lake was used for the removal of cadmium ions from aqueous solutions as its dry biomass, alive and heat-inactivated immobilized form on Ca-alginate. Particularly, the effect of physicochemical parameters like pH, initial concentration and contact time were investigated. The sorption of Cd(II) ions on the sorbent used was examined for the cadmium concentrations within the range of 25-250 mg/L. The biosorption of Cd(II) increased as the initial concentration of Cd(II) ions increased in the medium up to 100 mg/L. Maximum biosorption capacities for plain alginate beads, dry biomass, immobilized live Oscillatoria sp. HI and immobilized heat-inactivated Oscillatoria sp. HI were 21.2, 30.1, 32.2 and 27.5 mg/g, respectively. Biosorption equilibrium was established in about I h for the biosorption processes. The biosorption was well described by Langmuir and Freundlich adsorption isotherms. Maximum adsorption was observed at pH 6.0. The alginate-algae beads could be regenerated using 50 mL of 0.1 mol/L HCl solution with about 85% recovery. (C) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.