State Water Resources Research Institute Program

Project ID: 2009MS87B
Title: Molecular Identification of Bacterial Communities Associated with Biodegradation of Pentachlorophenol in Groundwater
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2009
End Date: 2/28/2010
Congressional District: 3rd
Focus Categories: Groundwater, Toxic Substances, Water Quality
Keywords: Water quality, Groundwater contamination
Principal Investigator: Prewitt, M Lynn; Borazjani, Hamid; Diehl, Susan
Federal Funds: $ 14,237
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 28,474
Abstract: Because Pentachlorophenol (PCP) is a toxic and recalcitrant pesticide, PCP contaminated groundwater presents a major health concern for humans and the environment. Over ninety percent of the human population in the state of Mississippi rely on groundwater for domestic use. PCP contaminated groundwater is caused predominately from agricultural runoff and improper disposal at wood treating facilities. Previous studies have found what is believed to be a consortium of bacteria that degrade PCP in groundwater and in soil. However the identity of this consortium is not known. This study seeks to identify the consortium during biodegradation of PCP in groundwater using biosparging biotechnology. Water samples will be collected quarterly from eight wells and analyzed for concentration of PCP and its metabolites. Molecular identification tools such as cloning will be used to separate the consortium into single isolates and sequencing will be used to determine the identity of each bacterium in the consortium. With this information we can begin to understand the mechanism by which this consortium degrades PCP. This will lead to developing biological consortiums that can degrade PCP to below detectable limits.

Progress/Completion Report, 2009, PDF
Progress/Completion Report, 2010, PDF

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