Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 148, Issue 3, pp 213–217

Anaerobic degradation of phenol by pure cultures of newly isolated denitrifying pseudomonads


  • A. Tschech
    • Abteilung Angewandte MikrobiologieUniversität Ulm
  • G. Fuchs
    • Abteilung Angewandte MikrobiologieUniversität Ulm
Original Papers

DOI: 10.1007/BF00414814

Cite this article as:
Tschech, A. & Fuchs, G. Arch. Microbiol. (1987) 148: 213. doi:10.1007/BF00414814


From various oxic or anoxic habitats several strains of bacteria were isolated which in the absence of molecular oxygen oxidized phenol to CO2 with nitrate as the terminal electron acceptor. All strains grew in defined mineral salts medium; two of them were further characterized. The bacteria were facultatively anaerobic Gramnegative rods; metabolism was strictly oxidative with molecular oxygen, nitrate, or nitrite as electron acceptor. The isolates were tentatively identified as pseudomonads. Besides phenol many other benzene derivatives like cresols or aromatic acids were anaerobically oxidized in the presence of nitrate. While benzoate or 4-hydroxybenzoate was degraded both anaerobically and aerobically, phenol was oxidized under anaerobic conditions only. Reduced alicyclic compounds were not degraded. Preliminary evidence is presented that the first reaction in anaerobic phenol oxidation is phenol carboxylation to 4-hydroxybenzoate.

Key words

Anaerobic degradationAromatic compoundsPhenolCresol4-HydroxybenzoateDenitrificationPseudomonas sp.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1987