Quantitative and functional dynamics of Dehalococcoides spp. and its tceA and vcrA genes under TCE exposure
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This study aimed at monitoring the dynamics of phylogenetic and catabolic genes of a dechlorinating enrichment culture before, during, and after complete dechlorination of chlorinated compounds. More specifically, the effect of 40 μM trichloroethene (TCE) and 5.6 mM lactate on the gene abundance and activity of an enrichment culture was investigated for 40 days. Although tceA and vcrA gene copy numbers were relatively stable in DNA extracts over time, tceA and vcrA mRNA abundances were up-regulated from undetectable levels to 2.96 × and 6.33 × 104 transcripts/mL, respectively, only after exposure to TCE and lactate. While tceA gene transcripts decreased over time with TCE dechlorination, the vcrA gene was expressed steadily even when the concentration of vinyl chloride was at undetectable levels. In addition, ratios between catabolic and phylogenetic genes indicated that tceA and vcrA gene carrying organisms dechlorinated TCE and its produced daughter products, while vcrA gene was mainly responsible for the dechlorination of the lower VC concentrations in a later stage of degradation.
KeywordsDehalococcoides spp. RDase genes ATP activity RNA Dynamics
The research has received funding from the European Community’s Seventh Framework Program FP7/2007-2013 under Grant agreement no 212683 (GOODWATER). Contributions of Wietse Heylen, Queenie Simons and Yamini Satyawali are appreciated.
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