Molecular assessment of the potential for in situ bioremediation of PCBs from aquatic sediments
Bioremediation, Biphenyl dioxygenase, Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), Lake Erie, Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), Polymerase chain reaction (PCR)
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are a family of xenobiotic compounds that are ubiquitous and oftentimes persistent environmental pollutants. As such, PCBs are a common target of sediment remediation efforts. Microbial degradation of sediment pollutants such as PCBs offers an environmentally sound and economically favorable alternative to conventional means of remediation such as dredging. This project describes the development of a PCR-based assay to determine the potential for PCB bioremediation by the resident microbial consortium in contaminated sediments. Using PCR and RT-PCR of DNA and RNA, respectively, extracted from aquatic sediments collected from the western basin of Lake Erie and one of its tributaries, we were able to amplify the bphA1 gene that encodes the large subunit of biphenyl dioxygenase. Since other studies have determined that the BphA1 gene product dictates PCB congener specificity, this assay may prove to be a useful screen for endemic catabolic activities for PCB mixtures in aquatic sediments.
Hoostal, Matthew J.; Bullerjahn, George S.; and McKay, R. Michael L.. (2002). Molecular assessment of the potential for in situ bioremediation of PCBs from aquatic sediments. Hydrobiologia, 469, 59-65.