Bioremediation of di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate contaminated red soil by Gordonia terrae RL-JC02: Characterization, metabolic pathway and kinetics.

Elsevier BV
Publication Type:
Journal Article
The Science of the total environment, 2020, 733, pp. 139138
Issue Date:
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Di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) is the most widely used plasticizer and a representative endocrine disrupting chemical. The toxicological effects of DEHP on environmental and human health have been widely investigated. In this study, the DEHP-degrading bacterial strain RL-JC02 was isolated from red soil with long-term usage of plastic mulch, and it was identified as Gordonia terrae by 16S rRNA gene analysis coupled with physiological and biochemical characterization. The biodegrading capacity of different phthalic acid esters and related intermediates was investigated as well as the performance of strain RL-JC02 under different environmental conditions, such as temperature, pH, salinity and DEHP concentration. Specifically, strain RL-JC02 showed good tolerance to low pH, with 86.6% of DEHP degraded under the initial pH of 5.0 within 72 h. The metabolic pathway of DEHP was examined by metabolic intermediate identification via a high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS) analysis in which DEHP was hydrolyzed into phthalic acid (PA) and 2-ethylhexanol (2-EH) via mono (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (MEHP). PA and 2-EH were further utilized through the protocatechuic acid metabolic pathway and β-oxidation via protocatechuic acid and 2-ethylhexanoic acid, respectively. The application potential of strain RL-JC02 was confirmed through the bioremediation of artificial DEHP-contaminated red soil showing 91.8% DEHP degradation by strain RL-JC02 within 30 d. The kinetics analysis of DEHP degradation by strain RL-JC02 in soil demonstrated that the process followed the modified Gompertz model. Meanwhile, the cell concentration monitoring of strain RL-JC02 in soil with absolute quantification polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) suggested that strain RL-JC02 survived well during bioremediation. This study provides sufficient evidence of a robust degrader for the bioremediation of PAE-contaminated red soil.
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