In this study, a novel aerobic microbial consortium for the complete detoxification of 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT) was developed using starch as a slow-releasing carbon source under nitrogen-fixing conditions. Aerobic TNT biodegradation coupled with microbial growth was effectively stimulated by the co-addition of starch and TNT under nitrogen-fixing conditions. The addition of starch with TNT led to TNT mineralization via ring cleavage without accumulation of any toxic by-products, indicating improved TNT detoxification by the co-addition of starch and TNT. Pyrosequencing targeting the bacterial 16S rRNA gene suggested that Methylophilus and Pseudoxanthomonas population were significantly stimulated by the co-addition of starch and TNT and that the Methylophilus population became predominant in the consortium. Together with our previous study regarding starch-stimulated RDX (hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine) degradation (Khan et al., J. Hazard. Mater. 287 (2015) 243-251), this work suggests that the co-addition of starch with a target explosive is an effective way to stimulate aerobic explosive degradation under nitrogen-fixing conditions for enhancing explosive detoxification.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by the Korea Ministry of Environment via the GAIA project. In addition, the authors acknowledge Mr. Tuan Van Doan, Mr. Taekwon Lee, and Mr. Jangho Lee for their assistance in the analysis of molecular biological data.
© 2015 Elsevier B.V.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Waste Management and Disposal
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis