New Developments And Potentials

Pollutants' degradability often depends on their origin and source: although xenobiotics, which are characterized by unnatural structures, cannot be degraded (persistent compounds), or can be degraded only with difficulty (recalcitrant compounds), the biogenic ones are easily biodegradable. For this reason, much research effort is being spent on the isolation, selection, and construction of different mi-

croorganisms (27,69,70) able to grow on difficult carbon sources in pure cultures, at rates comparable with those usually encountered on common substrates (Table 4).

For these reasons, it is evident that future developments and new applications of this technology strongly depend on the actual possibility of utilizing these microbial strains in pure cultures or selected consortia under the peculiar conditions, as present in biofilters.

Table 4. Xenobiotic Compounds and Microorganisms Able to Degrade Them in Pure Cultures



Chlorinated hydrocarbons (27,ßS)

Methyl chloride Dichloromethane

1,2-Dichloroethane Vinylchloride Epichlorohydrine Ghlorobenzene




Benzene Toluene

Monoalkylbenzenes m-,p-Xylene o-Xylene

Styrene a-Methylstyrene

Hyphomicrobium sp. Pseudomonas DM1 Methylobacter DM111 Hyphomicrobium sp. Xanthobacter GJ10 Mycobacterium L1 Pseudomonas AD1 Pseudomonas WR 1306 Pseudomonas GJ 60 Pseudomonas sp. Alcaligenes A175

Arenes (69)

Pseudomonas sp.

Acinetobacter calcoaceticus RJE 74 Pseudomonas sp. Pseudomonas putida Bacillus sp.

Pseudomonas sp. NCIB 10643 Pseudomonas fluorescens Pseudomonas putida RE204 Acinetobacter Iwoffi Pseudomonas sp. Nocardia sp. Pseudomonas stutzeri Corynebacterium sp. C125 Xanthobacter sp 124X Pseudomonas putida Pseudomonas sp.

Biphenyl (69)

Pseudomonas sp. NCIB 10643 Nocardia sp. NCIB 10503 Pseudomonas cruciviae Pseudomonas putida Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes Pseudomonas aeruginosa Escherichia coli

(Fused-ring compounds) (69)

Pseudomonas sp. Pseudomonas fluorescens Pseudomonas putida Pseudomonas sp. Pseudomonas paucimobilis Pseudomonas vesicularis Algaligenes denitrificans


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