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Microbial Degradation of Polychlorophenols

  • Luying Xun
Chapter
Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)

Abstract

Polychlorophenols are major environmental pollutants, and their degradation by microorganisms has been extensively studied for the purpose of bioremediation. Three different metabolic pathways for aerobic degradation of polychlorophenols have been completely worked out, revealing the metabolic diversity for these structurally similar compounds. Substituted quinols, rather than catechols, are key metabolic intermediates of polychlorophenol biodegradation. Substituted quinols and quinones are also called as p–hydroquinones and p-benzoquinones, reflecting the reduced and oxidized forms. For example, tetrachloroquinol is the same as tetrachloro-p-hydroquinone, and tetrachloroquinone is often referred as tetrachloro-p-benzoquinone. Characterization of individual enzymes has led to the discoveries of novel dechlorination mechanisms. The genes coding for the enzymes have been cloned and sequenced, and the gene organization and regulation suggest that recent gene recruitments have occurred for the degradation of some polychlorophenols.

Keywords

Flavin Adenine Dinucleotide Metabolic Intermediate Glutathione Transferase Reductive Dechlorination Quinone Reductase 
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.

Notes

Acknowledgments

I began working on polychlorophenol degradation as a postdoctoral scientist with Dr. Cindy S. Orser at University of Idaho and have continued the research as a faculty member at Washington State University. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory provided me with lab space and equipment from 1992 to 1997. National Science Foundation has supported the research with grants MCB-921873, MCB-9722970, MCB-0323167 and MCB-1021148. My graduate students, postdoctoral scientists, and coworkers have significantly contributed to the progress summarized here. We have collaborated with Dr. A. M. Chakrabarty’s group at University of Illinois at Chicago on 2,4,5-T degradation.

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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg  2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Molecular BiosciencesWashington State UniversityPullmanUSA

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