Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 2010, Vol.87(4), pp.1543-1554
Polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs) are classified as “high-priority pollutants.” Diverse microorganisms are able to degrade PCBs. However, bacterial degradation of PCBs is generally incomplete, leading to the accumulation of chlorobenzoates (CBAs) as dead-end metabolites. To obtain a microorganism able to mineralize PCB congeners, the bph locus of Burkholderia xenovorans LB400, which encodes one of the most effective PCB degradation pathways, was incorporated into the genome of the CBA-degrading bacterium Cupriavidus necator JMP134-X3. The bph genes were transferred into strain JMP134-X3, using the mini-Tn5 transposon system and biparental mating. The genetically modified derivative, C. necator strain JMS34, had only one chromosomal insertion of bph locus, which was stable under nonselective conditions. This modified bacterium was able to grow on biphenyl, 3-CBA and 4-CBA, and degraded 3,5-CBA in the presence of m -toluate. The strain JMS34 mineralized 3-CB, 4-CB, 2,4′-CB, and 3,5-CB, without accumulation of CBAs. Bioaugmentation of PCB-polluted soils with C. necator strain JMS34 and with the native B. xenovorans LB400 was monitored. It is noteworthy that strain JMS34 degraded, in 1 week, 99% of 3-CB and 4-CB and approximately 80% of 2,4′-CB in nonsterile soil, as well as in sterile soil. Additionally, the bacterial count of strain JMS34 increased by almost two orders of magnitude in PCB-polluted nonsterile soil. In contrast, the presence of native microflora reduced the degradation of these PCBs by strain LB400 from 73% (sterile soil) to approximately 50% (nonsterile soil). This study contributes to the development of improved biocatalysts for remediation of PCB-contaminated environments.
PCBs ; Chlorobenzoate ; Cupriavidus necator ; Mineralization ; Genetically modified microorganism ; Bioremediation
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