Biodegradation of low-molecular-weight halogenated hydrocarbons by methanotrophic bacteria

R. S. Hanson, H. C. Tsien, K. Tsuji, G. A. Brusseau, Lawrence P Wackett

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Low-molecular-weight halogenated hydrocarbons are susceptible to degradation by anaerobic and aerobic bacteria. The methanotrophic bacterium Methylosinus trichosporium 0B3b degrades trichloroethylene more rapidly than other bacteria examined to date. Expression of soluble methane monooxygenase (MMO) is correlated with high rates of biodegradation. An analysis of 16 S rRNA sequences of 11 ribosomal RNAs from type I, type II and type X methanotrophs and methanol-utilizing bacteria have revealed four clusters of phytogenetically related methylotrophs. This information may be useful for the identification and enumeration of methylotrophs in bioreactors and other environments during remediation of contaminated waters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)273-278
Number of pages6
JournalFEMS Microbiology Letters
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Dec 1990


  • Biodegradation
  • Bioremediation
  • Halogenated hydrocarbons
  • Methylosinus trichosporium
  • Trichloroethylene


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