Microbial Monitoring During Bioaugmentation with Dehalococcoides
Molecular biological tools (MBTs) measure specific biomarkers that are indicators of the ability of bacteria to degrade specific contaminants. Among all MBTs, application of nucleic acid-based tools is the most advanced, and specific tests for the presence and abundance of key dechlorinating (i.e., Dehalococcoides) bacteria, as well as other key contaminant-degrading bacteria, are commercially available. Used in conjunction with contaminant and geochemical data, nucleic acid-based MBTs can be used to: (1) confirm the presence of naturally occurring bacterial populations capable of biodegradation; (2) identify the need for bioaugmentation at a site; and (3) monitor the performance of a bioremediation treatment. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) techniques have been most widely used to quantify key bacteria and the functional genes (e.g., tceA, vcrA and bvcA) responsible for reductive dechlorination processes. This chapter provides a practical introduction into the science behind several MBTs, as well as their value to remedial practitioners for site characterization, remedial technology screening and performance monitoring. Strategies and procedures for groundwater sampling, as well as data interpretation for qPCR, FISH and community profiling techniques are presented.
KeywordsBiomass Shipping Geochemistry Electrophoresis Chlorinate
The authors thank Mark Davidson of Geosyntec Consultants for a thoughtful review of the manuscript.
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