The white rot fungus Phanerochaete chrysosporium, which generally mineralizes substituted aromatics to CO2, transformed linear alkylbenzene sulfonate (LAS) surfactants mainly at their alkyl side chain. Degradation of LAS was evidenced by a zone of clearing on LAS-containing agar plates and colorimetric analysis of liquid cultures. Disappearance of LAS was virtually complete within 10 days in low nitrogen (2.4 mM N), high nitrogen (24 mM N) and malt extract (ME) liquid media. After 5 days of incubation in ME medium, transformation of LAS was complete at concentrations≤4 mg l-1, but decreased at higher concentrations. The LAS degradation was not dependent on lignin peroxidases (LiPs) and manganese-dependent peroxidases (MnPs). Mineralization of14C-ring-LAS to 14CO2 by P. chrysosporium was <1% regardless of the culture conditions used. Thin layer chromatography and mass spectral analyses indicated that P. chrysosporium transformed LAS to sulfophenyl carboxylates (SPCs) through oxidative shortening of the alkyl side-chains. While LAS disappearance in the cultures was not dependent on LiPs and MnPs, transformation of the parent LAS moieties to SPCs was more extensive in low N medium that favors expression of these enzymes. The SPCs produced in LN cultures were shorter in chain-length than those produced in ME cultures. Also there was a notable shift in the relative abundance of odd and even chain length metabolites compared to the starting LAS particularly in the low N cultures suggesting the possible involvement of processes other than or in addition toβ-oxidation in the chain-shortening process.
Biodegradation – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 19, 2004
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