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Analysis of petroleum biodegradation by a bacterial consortium isolated from worms of the polychaeta class (Annelida): Implications for NPK fertilizer supplementation

Sampaio, Carla Jaqueline Silva, Souza, José Roberto Bispo de, Carvalho, Gilson Correia de, Quintella, Cristina Maria, Roque, Milton Ricardo de Abreu
Journal of environmental management 2019 v.246 pp. 617-624
Acinetobacter, Bacillus (bacteria), Enterobacter, NPK fertilizers, Pantoea, Polychaeta, alkanes, bacteria, biodegradation, biomass, bioremediation, digestive tract, fertilizer application, nitrogen, oils, petroleum, phosphorus, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, potassium
Degradation of petroleum hydrocarbons using bacterial consortia may be a means of optimizing bioremediation techniques. In this study, bacterial strains were isolated from the digestive tract of polychaete worms and evaluated concerning the potential of the bacteria to degrade petroleum compounds (Acinetobacter sp., Bacillus sp., Pantoea sp. and Enterobacter sp.). The strains were separately screened regarding their potential to degrade oil after 24 h. The main experiment was carried out for 30 days with the addition of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK) after 15 days (Bact-NPK15) and 28 days (Bact-NPK28) and without NPK (Bact). The Bact treatment biomass remained stable until the 20th day of the experiment. C13-C40 n-alkanes were degraded with all treatments in the following order: Bact>Bact-NPK28>Bact-NPK15. Significant differences were observed between the controls and all treatments (p = 0.00031). Measurement of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) indicates a lower contribution of these compounds in the Bact-NPK28 treatment, although no significant difference between groups was observed. Bact-NPK28 was able to remove 40% of naphthalene, while Bact-NPK15 removed 20%; this effect was not observed in Bact. Higher hopane degradation levels were observed in Bact and, to a lesser extent, in Bact-NPK28. NPK application for 28 days mainly favored PAH degradation. The evaluated consortium thus exhibits potential in the bioremediation of petroleum-contaminated areas.