Effects of copper on biodegradation mechanism of trichloroethylene by mixed microorganisms

Yanhui Gao1 Tiantao Zhao1 Zhilin Xing1,2 Zhi He1 Lijie Zhang1 Xuya Peng2

(1.College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Chongqing University of Technology, Chongqing, China 400054)
(2.College of Urban Construction and Environmental Engineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing, China 400045)

【Abstract】We isolated and enriched mixed microorganisms SWA1 from landfill cover soils supplemented with trichloroethylene (TCE). The microbial mixture could degrade TCE effectively under aerobic conditions. Then, we investigated the effect of copper ion (0 to 15 μmol/L) on TCE biodegradation. Results showed that the maximum TCE degradation speed was 29.60 nmol/min with 95.75% degradation when copper ion was at 0.03 μmol/L. In addition, genes encoding key enzymes during biodegradation were analyzed by Real-time quantitative reverse transcription PCR (RT-qPCR). The relative expression abundance of pmoA gene (4.22E-03) and mmoX gene (9.30E-06) was the highest when copper ion was at 0.03 μmol/L. Finally, we also used MiSeq pyrosequencing to investigate the diversity of microbial community. Methylocystaceae that can co-metabolic degrade TCE were the dominant microorganisms; other microorganisms with the function of direct oxidation of TCE were also included in SWA1 and the microbial diversity decreased significantly along with increasing of copper ion concentration. Based on the above results, variation of copper ion concentration affected the composition of SWA1 and degradation mechanism of TCE. The degradation mechanism of TCE included co-metabolism degradation of methanotrophs and oxidation metabolism directly at copper ion of 0.03 μmol/L. When copper ion at 5 μmol/L (biodegradation was 84.75%), the degradation mechanism of TCE included direct-degradation and co-metabolism degradation of methanotrophs and microorganisms containing phenol hydroxylase. Therefore, biodegradation of TCE by microorganisms was a complicated process, the degradation mechanism included co-metabolism degradation of methanotrophs and bio-oxidation of non-methanotrophs.

【Keywords】 mixed microorganisms; trichloroethylene; key enzymes; community structure; degradation mechanism;


【Funds】 National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 51378522, 41502328) National Natural Science Foundation of China(Nos.51378522,41502328) Fundamental and Advanced Research Projects of Chongqing (No. cstc2015jcyjB0015) Fundamental and Advanced Research Projects of Chongqing(No.cstc2015jcyjB0015)

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This Article


CN: 11-1998/Q

Vol 32, No. 05, Pages 621-634

May 2016


Article Outline



  • 1 Materials and methods
  • 2 Results and analyses
  • 3 Conclusion
  • References