Aminobacter MSH1-mineralisation of BAM in sand-filters depends on biological diversity

Flemming Ekelund, Christoffer Bugge Harder, Berith Elkær Knudsen, Jens Aamand

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9 Citations (Scopus)


BAM (2,6-dichlorobenzamide) is a metabolite of the pesticide dichlobenil. Naturally occurring bacteria that can utilize BAM are rare. Often the compound cannot be degraded before it reaches the groundwater and therefore it poses a serious threat to drinking water supplies. The bacterial strain Aminobacter MSH1 is a BAM degrader and therefore a potential candidate to be amended to sand filters in waterworks to remediate BAM polluted drinking water. A common problem in bioremediation is that bacteria artificially introduced into new diverse environments often thrive poorly, which is even more unfortunate because biologically diverse environments may ensure a more complete decomposition. To test the bioaugmentative potential of MSH1, we used a serial dilution approach to construct microcosms with different biological diversity. Subsequently, we amended Aminobacter MSH1 to the microcosms in two final concentrations; i.e. 105 cells mL-1 and 107 cells mL-1. We anticipated that BAM degradation would be most efficient at "intermediate diversities" as low diversity would counteract decomposition because of incomplete decomposition of metabolites and high diversity would be detrimental because of eradication of Aminobacter MSH1. This hypothesis was only confirmed when Aminobacter MSH1 was amended in concentrations of 105 cells mL-1. Our findings suggest that Aminobacter MSH1 is a very promising bioremediator at several diversity levels.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0128838
Number of pages14
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2015

Programme Area

  • Programme Area 2: Water Resources


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