Reductive transformation of methyl parathion by the cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. strain PCC7120
- First Online:
- Cite this article as:
- Barton, J.W., Kuritz, T., O’Connor, L.E. et al. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol (2004) 65: 330. doi:10.1007/s00253-004-1557-y
- 139 Downloads
Organophosphorus compounds are toxic chemicals that are applied worldwide as household pesticides and for crop protection, and they are stockpiled for chemical warfare. As a result, they are routinely detected in air and water. Methods and routes of biodegradation of these compounds are being sought. We report that under aerobic, photosynthetic conditions, the cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. transformed methyl parathion first to o,o-dimethyl o-p-nitrosophenyl thiophosphate and then to o,o-dimethyl o-p-aminophenyl thiophosphate by reducing the nitro group. The process of methyl parathion transformation occurred in the light, but not in the dark. Methyl parathion was toxic to cyanobacteria in the dark but did not affect their viability in the light. Methyl parathion transformation was not affected by mutations in the genes involved in nitrate reduction in cyanobacteria.