Archives of Microbiology

, 187:217 | Cite as

Mechanism controlling the extended lag period associated with vinyl chloride starvation in Nocardioides sp. strain JS614

  • Timothy E. MattesEmail author
  • Nicholas V. Coleman
  • Adina S. Chuang
  • Andrea J. Rogers
  • Jim C. Spain
  • James M. Gossett
Original Paper


The extended lag period associated with vinyl chloride (VC) starvation in VC- and ethene-assimilating Nocardioides sp. strain JS614 was examined. The extended lag periods were variable (3–7 days), only associated with growth on VC or ethene, and were observed in VC- or ethene-grown cultures following 24 h carbon starvation and mid-exponential phase cultures grown on non-alkene carbon sources (e.g. acetate). Alkene monooxygenase (AkMO) and epoxyalkane:coenzyme M transferase (EaCoMT) are the initial enzymes of VC and ethene biodegradation in strain JS614. Reverse-transcription PCR confirmed that the AkMO gene etnC was expressed in response to epoxyethane, a metabolic intermediate of ethene biodegradation. Epoxyethane (0.5 mM) eliminated the extended lag period in both starved and mid-exponential phase cultures, suggesting that epoxyethane accumulation activates AkMO expression in strain JS614. AkMO activity in ethene-grown cultures was not detected after 6.7 h of carbon starvation, while 40% of the initial EaCoMT activity remained after 24 h. Acetate eliminated the extended lag period in starved cultures but not in mid-exponential phase cultures suggesting that acetate reactivates extant AkMO in starved VC- or ethene-grown cultures. The imbalance between AkMO and EaCoMT activities during starvation likely contributes to the extended lag period by delaying epoxide accumulation and subsequent AkMO induction.


Vinyl Chloride Minimal Salt Medium Carbon Starvation Hewlett Packard Nocardioides 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We thank Juli Rubin, Brian Weisenstein, Linda Rankin, Julie Karceski, and Yang Oh Jin for technical assistance. We also thank Anthony Hay, Ruth Richardson, and Steve Zinder for use of their laboratories and for valuable advice. The U.S. National Science Foundation-supported Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis (NSF award EEC-0310689), the U.S. Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP), and The University of Iowa contributed funding for this work.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Timothy E. Mattes
    • 1
    Email author
  • Nicholas V. Coleman
    • 2
  • Adina S. Chuang
    • 1
  • Andrea J. Rogers
    • 1
  • Jim C. Spain
    • 3
  • James M. Gossett
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 4105 Seamans CenterThe University of IowaIowa CityUSA
  2. 2.School of Molecular and Microbial BiosciencesUniversity of SydneySydneyAustralia
  3. 3.School of Civil and Environmental EngineeringGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA
  4. 4.School of Civil and Environmental EngineeringCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

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