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Characterization of a phenanthrene-degrading methanogenic community

Ye, Quanhui, Liang, Chengyue, Wang, Chongyang, Wang, Yun, Wang, Hui
Frontiers of environmental science & engineering 2018 v.12 no.5 pp. 4
Comamonadaceae, Methanobacterium, Nocardiaceae, Thermodesulfobiaceae, benzene, glucose, hexadecane, hexane, methane, methanogens, phenanthrenes, polluted soils, ribosomal RNA, sediments, sequence analysis, sludge, wastewater
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) often occur in oil-contaminated soil, coke wastewater and domestic sludge; however, associated PAH degraders in these environments are not clear. Here we evaluated phenanthrene degradation potential in the mixed samples of above environments, and obtained a methanogenic community with different microbial profile compared to those from sediments. Phenanthrene was efficiently degraded (1.26 mg/L/d) and nonstoichiometric amount of methane was produced simultaneously. 16S rRNA gene sequencing demonstrated that bacterial populations were mainly associated with Comamonadaceae Nocardiaceae and Thermodesulfobiaceae, and that methanogenic archaea groups were dominated by Methanobacterium and Methanothermobacter. Substances such as hexane, hexadecane, benzene and glucose showed the most positive effects on phenanthrene degradation. Substrate utilization tests indicated that this culture could not utilize other PAHs. These analyses could offer us some suggestions on the putative phenanthrene-degrading microbes in such environments, and might help us develop strategies for the removal of PAHs from contaminated soil and sludge.