The reductive dechlorination of 2,3,4,5-tetrachlorobiphenyl in three different sediment cultures: Evidence for the involvement of phylogenetically similar Dehalococcoides-like bacterial populations

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Abstract

Anaerobic cultures capable of reductively dechlorinating 2,3,4,5-tetrachlorobiphenyl (CB) were enriched from three different sediments, one estuarine, one marine and one riverine. Two different electron donors were used in enrichments with the estuarine sediment (elemental iron or a mixture of fatty acids). The removal of doubly flanked meta and para chlorines to form 2,3,5-CB and 2,4,5-CB was observed in all cultures. Bacterial community analysis of PCR-amplified 16S rRNA gene fragments revealed different communities in these cultures, with the exception of one common population that showed a high phylogentic relatedness to Dehalococcoides species. No Dehalococcoides-like populations were ever detected in control cultures to which no PCBs were added. In addition, the dynamics of this Dehalococcoides-like population were strongly correlated with dechlorination. Subcultures of the estuarine sediment culture demonstrated that the Dehalococcoides-like population disappeared when dechlorination was inhibited with 2-bromoethanesulfonate or when 2,3,4,5-CB had been consumed. These results provide evidence that Dehalococcoides-like populations were involved in the removal of doubly flanked chlorines from 2,3,4,5-CB. Furthermore, the successful enrichment of these populations from geographically distant and geochemically distinct environments indicates the widespread presence of these PCB-dechlorinating, Dehalococcoides-like organisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)248-261
Number of pages14
JournalFEMS microbiology ecology
Volume55
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2006

Keywords

  • Dehalococcoides
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls
  • Reductive dechlorination

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