Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 101, Issue 13, pp 5235–5245 | Cite as

Groundwater contamination with 2,6-dichlorobenzamide (BAM) and perspectives for its microbial removal

  • Lea Ellegaard-JensenEmail author
  • Benjamin Horemans
  • Bart Raes
  • Jens Aamand
  • Lars Hestbjerg Hansen


The pesticide metabolite 2,6-dichlorobenzamide (BAM) is very persistent in both soil and groundwater and has become one of the most frequently detected groundwater micropollutants. BAM is not removed by the physico-chemical treatment techniques currently used in drinking water treatment plants (DWTP); therefore, if concentrations exceed the legal threshold limit, it represents a sizeable problem for the stability and quality of drinking water production, especially in places that depend on groundwater for drinking water. Bioremediation is suggested as a valuable strategy for removing BAM from groundwater by deploying dedicated BAM-degrading bacteria in DWTP sand filters. Only a few bacterial strains with the capability to degrade BAM have been isolated, and of these, only three isolates belonging to the Aminobacter genus are able to mineralise BAM. Considerable effort has been made to elucidate degradation pathways, kinetics and degrader genes, and research has recently been presented on the application of strain Aminobacter sp. MSH1 for the purification of BAM-contaminated water. The aim of the present review was to provide insight into the issue of BAM contamination and to report on the current status and knowledge with regard to the application of microorganisms for purification of BAM-contaminated water resources. This paper discusses the prospects and challenges for bioaugmentation of DWTP sand filters with specific BAM-degrading bacteria and identifies relevant perspectives for future research.


Water treatment Drinking water Pesticide contamination BAM Biodegradation Aminobacter sp. MSH1 



Lea Ellegaard-Jensen, Jens Aamand and Lars Hestbjerg Hansen were supported by the research project MEM2BIO (Innovation Fund Denmark, contract number 5157-00004B).

Benjamin Horemans was supported by the FWO postdoctoral fellowship grant (12Q0215N) and the BELSPO IAP-project μ-manager no. P7/25. Bart Raes was supported by the C1 project no. C14/15/043 of KU Leuven.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Environmental ScienceAarhus UniversityRoskildeDenmark
  2. 2.KU Leuven, Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesHeverleeBelgium
  3. 3.Department of Geochemistry, The Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS)Copenhagen KDenmark

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