The Use of Multiple Lines of Evidence to Substantiate Anaerobic BTEX Degradation in Groundwater

Aromatic compounds are nowadays still of major environmental concern. These compounds have been proven to be biodegradable under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions. Under anaerobic conditions several biodegradation pathways are proposed, but the bacteria and specific genes involved remain largely unknown. The detection of the actual biological degradation potential and expected kinetics of degradation in the field are therefore a challenge. Usually, a combination of different lines of evidence is used to determine and predict the biodegradation of BTEX under anaerobic conditions in the field. These include compound-specific monitoring of pollutants and intermediates in groundwater, laboratory degradation tests, stable isotope probing and application of BACTRAPs and/or microcosms. Each of these methods provides part but indirect evidence for the actual in situ biodegradation kinetics. Molecular monitoring of biodegradation of aromatic compounds in the field is not commonly used but can provide important additional evidence, especially when directed to target RNA.
Source: Springer protocols feed by Microbiology - Category: Microbiology Source Type: news