Microbial Biodegradation of 2,4,5-Trichlorophenoxyacetic Acid and Chlorophenols

  • J. S. Karns
  • J. J. Kilbane
  • D. K. Chatterjee
  • A. M. Chakrabarty
Part of the Basic Life Sciences book series (BLSC, volume 28)


Maintaining the carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur balances in the environment is one of the main tasks of microorganisms in nature; microorganisms degrade most compounds so that their basic elements can be recycled. However, naturally occurring chlorinated hydrocarbons are rather rare (25). Chlorinated synthetic chemicals such as PCBs, dichloro-diphenyl-trichloro-ethane (DDT), and 2,4,5-T, generally are degraded only slowly (20,23,24), mostly through co-oxida-tive metabolism (1,23), The persistence of these compounds is thought to be due to a lack of the ability of microbial cells to derive their energy and cellular constituents from the oxidative metabolism of these compounds (1), Persistence of chemicals in nature will amplify our pollution problems as time progresses, so that even what seems like an insignificant amount of a given chemical, if applied repeatedly, will accumulate until its environmental impact is felt.


Basal Salt Medium Degradative Pathway AC1100 Treatment Degradative Gene Chloride Release 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. S. Karns
    • 1
  • J. J. Kilbane
    • 1
  • D. K. Chatterjee
    • 1
  • A. M. Chakrabarty
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Health Sciences CenterUniversity of Illinois at ChicagoChicagoUSA

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