Bioenergetic Strategy for the Biodegradation of p-Cresol by the Unicellular Green Alga Scenedesmus obliquus

TitleBioenergetic Strategy for the Biodegradation of p-Cresol by the Unicellular Green Alga Scenedesmus obliquus
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsPapazi, A, Assimakopoulos K, Kotzabasis K
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume7
Issue12
Abstract

Cultures from the unicellular green alga Scenedesmus obliquus biodegrade the toxic p-cresol (4-methylphenol) and use it as alternative carbon/energy source. The biodegradation procedure of p-cresol seems to be a two-step process. HPLC analyses indicate that the split of the methyl group (first step) that is possibly converted to methanol (increased methanol concentration in the growth medium), leading, according to our previous work, to changes in the molecular structure and function of the photosynthetic apparatus and therefore to microalgal biomass increase. The second step is the fission of the intermediately produced phenol. A higher p-cresol concentration results in a higher p-cresol biodegradation rate and a lower total p-cresol biodegradability. The first biodegradation step seems to be the most decisive for the effectiveness of the process, because methanol offers energy for the further biodegradation reactions. The absence of LHCII from the Scenedesmus mutant wt-lhc stopped the methanol effect and significantly reduced the p-cresol biodegradation (only 9%). The present contribution deals with an energy distribution between microalgal growth and p-cresol biodegradation, activated by p-cresol concentration. The simultaneous biomass increase with the detoxification of a toxic phenolic compound (p-cresol) could be a significant biotechnological aspect for further applications. © 2012 Papazi et al.

URLhttp://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?eid=2-s2.0-84871264817&partnerID=40&md5=ba5a64bfd0b0ded62d902eb5d8cb5a3d

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