Terrestrial environment

Isolation and preliminary characterization of a 3-chlorobenzoate degrading bacteria

QI Yun , ZHAO Lin , OJEKUNLE Z. Olusheyi , TAN Xin


Received April 03, 2006,Revised July 10, 2006, Accepted , Available online

Volume 19,2007,Pages 332-337

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A study was conducted to compare the diversity of 2-, 3-, and 4-chlorobenzoate degraders in two pristine soils and one contaminated sewage sludge. These samples contained strikingly different populations of mono-chlorobenzoate degraders. Although fewer cultures were isolated in the uncontaminated soil than contaminated ones, the ability of microbial populations to mineralize chlorobenzoate was widespread. The 3- and 4-chlorobenzoate degraders were more diverse than the 2-chlorobenzoate degraders. One of the strains isolated from the sewage sludge was obtained. Based on its phenotype, chemotaxonomic properties and 16S rRNA gene, the organism S-7 was classified as Rhodococcus erythropolis. The strain can grow at temperature from 4 to 37°C. It can utilize several (halo)aromatic compounds. Moreover, strain S-7 can grow and use 3-chlorobenzoate as sole carbon source in a temperatures range of 10--30℃ with stoichiometric release of chloride ions. The psychrotolerant ability was significant for bioremediation in low temperature regions. Catechol and chlorocatechol 1,2-dioxygenase activities were present in cell free extracts of the strain, but no (chloro)catechol 2,3-dioxygenase activities was detected. Spectral conversion assays with extracts from R. erythropolis S-7 showed accumulation of a compound with a similar UV spectrum as chloro-cis, cis-muconate from 3-chlorobenzoate. On the basis of these results, we proposed that S-7 degraded 3-chlorobenzoate through the modified ortho-cleave pathway.

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