Kinetics of benzene biotransformation under microaerophilic and oxygen-limited conditions

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Journal titleBiotechnology and Bioengineering
Pages347355; # of pages: 9
AbstractA special microbial consortium adapted to degrade petroleum hydrocarbons at limited availability of oxygen, transformed benzene, a highly toxic and carcinogenic contaminant of groundwater and soil, at low initial dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations of 0.05-2 mg/L. The employed initial concentrations of dissolved oxygen were considerably lower than the previously reported values. Under these conditions, the overall transformation of benzene ranged from 34% � 1.7% to 100%, considerably higher than the theoretical predictions for complete mineralization of benzene based on the requirement of 3.08 mg oxygen/mg benzene. Unlike biotransformation that proceeded at the lowest examined DO concentration of 0.05 mg/L, the mineralization of benzene, defined by its conversion to CO2 and water, required a minimum DO concentration of 0.2 mg/L. The mineralization of benzene under microaerophilic conditions (DO < 2 mg/L), ranged from 0.83% � 0.06% to 89% � 1.3%, which was less than the theoretical predictions at any given initial DO concentration. The regulatory effects of dissolved oxygen concentration or its partial pressure on the activities of enzymes catalyzing the biotransformation of aromatic hydrocarbons was postulated to account for the reduced mineralization of benzene. The ratio between the transformed benzene and the consumed oxygen increased with the decrease of initial DO concentration, reaching a value of 2.8, considerably higher than the theoretical value of 0.33 obtained for a complete aerobic oxidation of benzene. Phenol was the major and the most stable intermediate metabolite during the biotransformation of benzene at low concentrations of DO. While benzene transformation stopped after the depletion of oxygen in the experimental system, phenol continued to accumulate under strictly anaerobic conditions, indicating its formation from an alternative carbon source, possibly biomass. � 2002 Government of Canada. Exclusive worldwide publication rights in this article have been transferred to Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biotechnol Bioeng 79: 347-355, 2002.
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AffiliationNational Research Council Canada; NRC Biotechnology Research Institute
Peer reviewedNo
NPARC number12328129
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Record identifier2ef2b526-9d80-4603-a5bb-e643b707779b
Record created2009-09-10
Record modified2016-05-09
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