Main content area

Production of more toxic hexa-brominated diphenyl ether from rapid biotransformation of decabromodiphenyl ether in anaerobic granular sludge

Zhou, Qingxin, Ge, Cheng-Hao, Ahmad, Hafiz Adeel, Ni, Shou-Qing, Liu, Xiaolin, Bu, Cuina, Wang, Fengli, Gao, Baoyu
International biodeterioration & biodegradation 2018 v.134 pp. 7-15
Bacteroidetes, Euryarchaeota, Pseudomonas, Ralstonia, biotransformation, cell membranes, cytotoxicity, dimethyl sulfoxide, flame retardants, granules, polybrominated diphenyl ethers, sludge, solvents, wastewater treatment
Decabromodiphenyl ether (BDE-209) is used widely as a flame retardant and deserves more attention due to its potential danger to environment. Previous studies generally considered that BDE-209 degraded slowly in environment. Herein, a rapid reductive debromination of BDE-209 to BDE-154 was demonstrated with simultaneous stoichiometric bromide recovery (45%) in 10 h driven by the anaerobic granules. Debromination occurred in anaerobic granules when they were spiked with BDE-209 dissolved in the solvent dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), which was proved a potential cosubstrate for stimulating PBDE debromination. Moreover, the solvent DMSO enhanced the penetration of BDE-209 across cell membranes and forced the dominant phylum in anaerobic granules to change from Bacteroidetes to Euryarchaeota. Thus, the amended culture could better raise the functional genera Ralstonia and Pseudomonas, accounting for the rapid degradation of BDE-209. This is the first report that BDE-209 could be quickly debrominated to BDE-154 in anaerobic granules. Given the high cytotoxicity of BDE-154 produced from BDE-209, the fate of BDE-209 in the wastewater treatment plants should be paid more attention.