Stable-isotope probing of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon-degrading bacterial guild in a contaminated soil.
ABSTRACT: The bacteria responsible for the degradation of naphthalene, phenanthrene, pyrene, fluoranthene or benz[a]anthracene in a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH)-contaminated soil were investigated by DNA-based stable-isotope probing (SIP). Clone libraries of 16S rRNA genes were generated from the (13) C-enriched ('heavy') DNA recovered from each SIP experiment, and quantitative PCR primers targeting the 16S rRNA gene were developed to measure the abundances of many of the SIP-identified sequences. Clone libraries from the SIP experiments with naphthalene, phenanthrene and fluoranthene primarily contained sequences related to bacteria previously associated with the degradation of those compounds. However, Pigmentiphaga-related sequences were newly associated with naphthalene and phenanthrene degradation, and sequences from a group of uncultivated ?-Proteobacteria known as Pyrene Group 2 were newly associated with fluoranthene and benz[a]anthracene degradation. Pyrene Group 2-related sequences were the only sequences recovered from the clone library generated from SIP with pyrene, and they were 82% of the sequences recovered from the clone library generated from SIP with benz[a]anthracene. In time-course experiments with each substrate in unlabelled form, the abundance of each of the measured groups increased in response to the corresponding substrate. These results provide a comprehensive description of the microbial ecology of a PAH-contaminated soil as it relates to the biodegradation of PAHs from two to four rings, and they underscore that bacteria in Pyrene Group 2 are well-suited for the degradation of four-ring PAHs.
Project description:A betaproteobacterium within the family Rhodocyclaceae previously identified as a pyrene degrader via stable-isotope probing (SIP) of contaminated soil (designated pyrene group 1 or PG1) was cultivated as the dominant member of a mixed bacterial culture. A metagenomic library was constructed, and the largest contigs were analyzed for genes associated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) metabolism. Eight pairs of genes with similarity to the ?- and ?-subunits of ring-hydroxylating dioxygenases (RHDs) associated with aerobic bacterial PAH degradation were identified and linked to PG1 through PCR analyses of a simplified enrichment culture. In tandem with a ferredoxin and reductase found in close proximity to one pair of RHD genes, six of the RHDs were cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. Each cloned RHD was tested for activity against nine PAHs ranging in size from two to five rings. Despite differences in their predicted protein sequences, each of the six RHDs was capable of transforming phenanthrene and pyrene. Three RHDs could additionally transform naphthalene and fluorene, and these genotypes were also associated with the ability of the E. coli constructs to convert indole to indigo. Only one of the six cloned RHDs was capable of transforming anthracene and benz[a]anthracene. None of the tested RHDs were capable of significantly transforming fluoranthene, chrysene, or benzo[a]pyrene.
Project description:Acidovorax sp. strain NA3 was isolated from polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH)-contaminated soil that had been treated in a bioreactor and enriched with phenanthrene. The 16S rRNA gene of the isolate possessed 99.8 to 99.9% similarity to the dominant sequences recovered during a previous stable-isotope probing experiment with [U-(13)C]phenanthrene on the same soil (D. R. Singleton, S. N. Powell, R. Sangaiah, A. Gold, L. M. Ball, and M. D. Aitken, Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 71:1202-1209, 2005). The strain grew on phenanthrene as a sole carbon and energy source and could mineralize (14)C from a number of partially labeled PAHs, including naphthalene, phenanthrene, chrysene, benz[a]anthracene, and benzo[a]pyrene, but not pyrene or fluoranthene. Southern hybridizations of a genomic fosmid library with a fragment of the large subunit of the ring-hydroxylating dioxygenase gene from a naphthalene-degrading Pseudomonas strain detected the presence of PAH degradation genes subsequently determined to be highly similar in both nucleotide sequence and gene organization to an uncharacterized Alcaligenes faecalis gene cluster. The genes were localized to the chromosome of strain NA3. To test for gene induction by selected compounds, RNA was extracted from amended cultures and reverse transcribed, and cDNA associated with the enzymes involved in the first three steps of phenanthrene degradation was quantified by quantitative real-time PCR. Expression of each of the genes was induced most strongly by phenanthene and to a lesser extent by naphthalene, but other tested PAHs and PAH metabolites had negligible effects on gene transcript levels.
Project description:Benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) is a carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) that is not known to be a bacterial growth substrate. Organisms capable of cometabolizing BaP in complex field-contaminated systems have not previously been identified. We evaluated BaP mineralization by a bacterial community from a bioreactor treating PAH-contaminated soil during coincubation with or after pre-enrichment on various PAHs as growth substrates. Pyrosequence libraries of 16S rRNA genes were used to identify bacteria that were enriched on the added growth substrate as a means of associating specific organisms with BaP mineralization. Coincubating the bioreactor-treated soil with naphthalene, phenanthrene, or pyrene inhibited BaP mineralization, whereas pre-enriching the soil on the same three PAHs enhanced BaP mineralization. Combined, these results suggest that bacteria in the bioreactor community that are capable of growing on naphthalene, phenanthrene, and/or pyrene can metabolize BaP, with coincubation competitively inhibiting BaP metabolism. Anthracene, fluoranthene, and benz[a]anthracene had little effect on BaP mineralization compared to incubations without an added growth substrate under either coincubation or pre-enrichment conditions. Substantial increases in relative abundance after pre-enrichment with phenanthrene, naphthalene, or pyrene, but not the other PAHs, suggest that members of the genera Cupriavidus and Luteimonas may have been associated with BaP mineralization.
Project description:The Rieske nonheme iron aromatic ring-hydroxylating oxygenases (RHOs) NidAB and NidA3B3 from Mycobacterium vanbaalenii PYR-1 have been implicated in the initial oxidation of high-molecular-weight (HMW) polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), forming cis-dihydrodiols. To clarify how these two RHOs are functionally different with respect to the degradation of HMW PAHs, we investigated their substrate specificities to 13 representative aromatic substrates (toluene, m-xylene, phthalate, biphenyl, naphthalene, phenanthrene, anthracene, fluoranthene, pyrene, benz[a]anthracene, benzo[a]pyrene, carbazole, and dibenzothiophene) by enzyme reconstitution studies of Escherichia coli. Both Nid systems were identified to be compatible with type V electron transport chain (ETC) components, consisting of a [3Fe-4S]-type ferredoxin and a glutathione reductase (GR)-type reductase. Metabolite profiles indicated that the Nid systems oxidize a wide range of aromatic hydrocarbon compounds, producing various isomeric dihydrodiol and phenolic compounds. NidAB and NidA3B3 showed the highest conversion rates for pyrene and fluoranthene, respectively, with high product regiospecificity, whereas other aromatic substrates were converted at relatively low regiospecificity. Structural characteristics of the active sites of the Nid systems were investigated and compared to those of other RHOs. The NidAB and NidA3B3 systems showed the largest substrate-binding pockets in the active sites, which satisfies spatial requirements for accepting HMW PAHs. Spatially conserved aromatic amino acids, Phe-Phe-Phe, in the substrate-binding pockets of the Nid systems appeared to play an important role in keeping aromatic substrates within the reactive distance from the iron atom, which allows each oxygen to attack the neighboring carbons.
Project description:Given that the degradation of aromatic pollutants in anaerobic environments such as sediment is generally very slow, aeration could be an efficient bioremediation option. Using stable isotope probing (SIP) coupled with pyrosequencing analysis of 16S rRNA genes, we identified naphthalene-utilizing populations in aerated polyaromatic hydrocarbon (PAH)-polluted sediment. The results showed that naphthalene was metabolized at both 10 and 20°C following oxygen delivery, with increased degradation at 20°C as compared to 10°C-a temperature more similar to that found in situ. Naphthalene-derived (13)C was primarily assimilated by pseudomonads. Additionally, Stenotrophomonas, Acidovorax, Comamonas, and other minor taxa were determined to incorporate (13)C throughout the measured time course. The majority of SIP-detected bacteria were also isolated in pure cultures, which facilitated more reliable identification of naphthalene-utilizing populations as well as proper differentiation between primary consumers and cross-feeders. The pseudomonads acquiring the majority of carbon were identified as Pseudomonas veronii and Pseudomonas gessardii. Stenotrophomonads and Acidovorax defluvii, however, were identified as cross-feeders unable to directly utilize naphthalene as a growth substrate. PAH degradation assays with the isolated bacteria revealed that all pseudomonads as well as Comamonas testosteroni degraded acenaphthene, fluorene, and phenanthrene in addition to naphthalene. Furthermore, P. veronii and C. testosteroni were capable of transforming anthracene, fluoranthene, and pyrene. Screening of isolates for naphthalene dioxygenase genes using a set of in-house designed primers for Gram-negative bacteria revealed the presence of such genes in pseudomonads and C. testosteroni. Overall, our results indicated an apparent dominance of pseudomonads in the sequestration of carbon from naphthalene and potential degradation of other PAHs upon aeration of the sediment at both 20 and 10°C.
Project description:Human cytochrome P450 (P450) 2A13 was found to interact with several polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) to produce Type I binding spectra, including acenaphthene, acenaphthylene, benzo[c]phenanthrene, fluoranthene, fluoranthene-2,3-diol, and 1-nitropyrene. P450 2A6 also interacted with acenaphthene and acenaphthylene, but not with fluoranthene, fluoranthene-2,3-diol, or 1-nitropyrene. P450 1B1 is well-known to oxidize many carcinogenic PAHs, and we found that several PAHs (i.e., 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene, 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene-5,6-diol, benzo[c]phenanthrene, fluoranthene, fluoranthene-2,3-diol, 5-methylchrysene, benz[a]pyrene-4,5-diol, benzo[a]pyrene-7,8-diol, 1-nitropyrene, 2-aminoanthracene, 2-aminofluorene, and 2-acetylaminofluorene) interacted with P450 1B1, producing Reverse Type I binding spectra. Metabolic activation of PAHs and aryl- and heterocyclic amines to genotoxic products was examined in Salmonella typhimurium NM2009, and we found that P450 2A13 and 2A6 (as well as P450 1B1) were able to activate several of these procarcinogens. The former two enzymes were particularly active in catalyzing 2-aminofluorene and 2-aminoanthracene activation, and molecular docking simulations supported the results with these procarcinogens, in terms of binding in the active sites of P450 2A13 and 2A6. These results suggest that P450 2A enzymes, as well as P450 Family 1 enzymes including P450 1B1, are major enzymes involved in activating PAHs and aryl- and heterocyclic amines, as well as tobacco-related nitrosamines.
Project description:The polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH)-degrading strain Q8 was isolated from oilfield produced water. According to the analysis of a biochemical test, 16S rRNA gene, house-keeping genes and DNA-DNA hybridization, strain Q8 was assigned to a novel species of the genus Gordonia. The strain could not only grow in mineral salt medium (MM) and utilize naphthalene and pyrene as its sole carbon source, but also degraded mixed naphthalene, phenanthrene, anthracene and pyrene. The degradation ratio of these four PAHs reached 100%, 95.4%, 73.8% and 53.4% respectively after being degraded by Q8 for seven days. A comparative experiment found that the PAHs degradation efficiency of Q8 is higher than that of Gordonia alkaliphila and Gordonia paraffinivorans, which have the capacities to remove PAHs. Fourier transform infrared spectra, saturate, aromatic, resin and asphaltene (SARA) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis of crude oil degraded by Q8 were also studied. The results showed that Q8 could utilize n-alkanes and PAHs in crude oil. The relative proportions of the naphthalene series, phenanthrene series, thiophene series, fluorene series, chrysene series, C21-triaromatic steroid, pyrene, and benz(a)pyrene were reduced after being degraded by Q8. Gordonia sp. nov. Q8 had the capacity to remediate water and soil environments contaminated by PAHs or crude oil, and provided a feasible way for the bioremediation of PAHs and oil pollution.
Project description:Despite the considerable knowledge of bacterial high-molecular-weight (HMW) polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) metabolism, the key enzyme(s) and its pleiotropic and epistatic behavior(s) responsible for low-molecular-weight (LMW) PAHs in HMW PAH-metabolic networks remain poorly understood. In this study, a phenotype-based strategy, coupled with a spray plate method, selected a Mycobacterium vanbaalenii PYR-1 mutant (6G11) that degrades HMW PAHs but not LMW PAHs. Sequence analysis determined that the mutant was defective in pdoA2, encoding an aromatic ring-hydroxylating oxygenase (RHO). A series of metabolic comparisons using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis revealed that the mutant had a lower rate of degradation of fluorene, anthracene, and pyrene. Unlike the wild type, the mutant did not produce a color change in culture media containing fluorene, phenanthrene, and fluoranthene. An Escherichia coli expression experiment confirmed the ability of the Pdo system to oxidize biphenyl, the LMW PAHs naphthalene, phenanthrene, anthracene, and fluorene, and the HMW PAHs pyrene, fluoranthene, and benzo[a]pyrene, with the highest enzymatic activity directed toward three-ring PAHs. Structure analysis and PAH substrate docking simulations of the Pdo substrate-binding pocket rationalized the experimentally observed metabolic versatility on a molecular scale. Using information obtained in this study and from previous work, we constructed an RHO-centric functional map, allowing pleiotropic and epistatic enzymatic explanation of PAH metabolism. Taking the findings together, the Pdo system is an RHO system with the pleiotropic responsibility of LMW PAH-centric hydroxylation, and its epistatic functional contribution is also crucial for the metabolic quality and quantity of the PAH-MN.
Project description:The pyrene-degrading Mycobacterium sp. strain AP1 grew in nutrient-supplemented artificial seawater with a heavy fuel oil as the sole carbon source, causing the complete removal of all linear (C(12) to C(40)) and branched alkanes from the aliphatic fraction, as well as an extensive degradation of the three- and four-ring polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) phenanthrene (95%), anthracene (80%), fluoranthene (80%), pyrene (75%), and benzo(a)anthracene (30%). Alkylated PAHs, which are more abundant in crude oils than the nonsubstituted compounds, were selectively attacked at extents that varied from more than 90% for dimethylnaphthalenes, methylphenanthrenes, methylfluorenes, and methyldibenzothiophenes to about 30% for monomethylated fluoranthenes/pyrenes and trimethylated phenanthrenes and dibenzothiophenes. Identification of key metabolites indicated the utilization of phenanthrene, pyrene, and fluoranthene by known assimilatory metabolic routes, while other components were cooxidized. Detection of mono- and dimethylated phthalic acids demonstrated ring cleavage and further oxidation of alkyl PAHs. The extensive degradation of the alkanes, the two-, three-, and four-ring PAHs, and their 1-, 2-, and 3-methyl derivatives from a complex mixture of hydrocarbons by Mycobacterium sp. strain AP1 illustrates the great substrate versatility of alkane- and PAH-degrading mycobacteria.
Project description:Phenanthrene- and naphthalene-degrading bacteria were isolated from four offshore and nearshore locations in the Gulf of Mexico by using a modified most-probable-number technique. The concentrations of these bacteria ranged from 10(2) to 10(6) cells per ml of wet surficial sediment in mildly contaminated and noncontaminated sediments. A total of 23 strains of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH)-degrading bacteria were obtained. Based on partial 16S ribosomal DNA sequences and phenotypic characteristics, these 23 strains are members of the genus Cycloclasticus. Three representatives were chosen for a complete phylogenetic analysis, which confirmed the close relationship of these isolates to type strain Cycloclasticus pugetii PS-1, which was isolated from Puget Sound. PAH substrate utilization tests which included high-molecular-weight PAHs revealed that these isolates had similar, broad substrate ranges which included naphthalene, substituted naphthalenes, phenanthrene, biphenyl, anthracene, acenaphthene, and fluorene. Degradation of pyrene and fluoranthene occurred only when the strains were incubated with phenanthrene. Two distinct partial PAH dioxygenase iron sulfur protein (ISP) gene sequences were PCR amplified from Puget Sound and Gulf of Mexico Cycloclasticus strains. Phylogenetic analyses of these sequences revealed that one ISP type is related to the bph type of ISP sequences, while the other ISP type is related to the nah type of ISP sequences. The predicted ISP amino acid sequences for the Gulf of Mexico and Puget Sound strains are identical, which supports the hypothesis that these geographically separated isolates are closely related phylogentically. Cycloclasticus species appear to be numerically important and widespread PAH-degrading bacteria in both Puget Sound and the Gulf of Mexico.