Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 43, Issue 5, pp 914–919 | Cite as

The influence of physicochemical effects on the microbial degradation of chlorinated biphenyls

  • J. Havel
  • W. Reineke
Original Paper


The influence of different forms of substrate administration (either through the vapour phase or the liquid phase) on growth of two bacterial strains on biphenyl, 2-chlorobiphenyl, and 3,5-dichlorobiphenyl has been investigated. During growth with all three compounds, the availability of the substrate for the cells turned out to be the growth-limiting factor, even in liquid culture with excess substrate supplied to the medium. Growth on biphenyl and 2-chlorobiphenyl could be greatly enhanced if the substrate was distributed on a folded filter providing a large surface, which was placed in the vapour phase of the culture flask. This was not possible in the case of 3,5-dichlorobiphenyl. Here growth accelerated after accumulation of a yellowmeta cleavage product. Through measurement of the surface tension it was shown that this yellow compound possessed detergent-like activities, increasing the amount of 3,5-dichlorobiphenyl dissolved in the medium.


Biphenyl Vapour Phase Mineral Medium Substrate Supply Appl Environ 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Havel
    • 1
  • W. Reineke
    • 1
  1. 1.Chemische MikrobiologieBergische Universität — Gesamthochschule WuppertalWuppertalGermany

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