Home > Journals > Minerva Biotecnologica > Past Issues > Minerva Biotecnologica 2016 September;28(3) > Minerva Biotecnologica 2016 September;28(3):146-52



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Minerva Biotecnologica 2016 September;28(3):146-52


language: English

Biodegradation of organophosphorus insecticides by indigenous soil bacterium isolated from agricultural contaminated soil

Saba MUNIR, Mehreen KHALID, Muhammad BILAL, Usman IRSHAD, Mohammad M. SHAH, Jamshaid HUSSAIN, Tatheer A. NAQVI

Department of Environmental Sciences, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Abbottabad, Pakistan


BACKGROUND: Profenofos is one of the organophosphorus pesticides used enormously in different areas of Pakistan for controlling the pests of cotton, fruits and vegetables, etc. Although not highly persistent, its inadequate and enormous use may cause serious health problems, especially in the aquatic ecosystem. In the current study, the main objective was to isolate bacteria having ability to mineralize profenofos.
METHODS: In the current study, bacteria were isolated, through an enrichment technique, from the agricultural soil having previous history of organophosphates application. A single bacterial strain showing higher activity against profenofos was identified as Pseudomonas aeruginosa by using 16S rRNA technique.
RESULTS: The bacterium was found to be very efficient against profenofos if used as a sole source of phosphorus as well as carbon. When it had grown in the presence of pesticide, increase in bacterial growth was observed until 48 hours. Cell-free extract confirmed the phosphotriesterase activity of the enzyme by cleaving the phosphotriester bond in profenofos. The enzyme was found to be active against various other OPs as malathion and chlorpyrifos. To detect the putative presence of opd and opdA, the most exclusively reported genes involved in OPs degradation, newly isolated strains were subjected to colony PCR with their respective primers. The results of PCR amplification confirmed the presence of opd gene. It can be concluded that isolated bacterial strain might degrade the profenofos through the activity of OPH enzyme, encoded by opd gene.
CONCLUSIONS: The indigenous strain Pseudomonas aerouginosa is quite efficient in degrading the profenofos as well as other organophosphorus pesticides.

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