Pfender, W.F., S. P. Maggard, L. K. Gander and Lidia S. Watrud. 1997. Comparison of three bioremediation agents for mineralization and transformation of pentachlorophenol in soil. Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology 59:230-237.
Bacteria and fungi have been proposed as bioremediation agents for soil polluted with pentachlorophenol (PCP), and have been studied separately under various conditions. Extent of PCP degradation by particular oganisms in soil is affected by such factors as temperature, soil moisture, oxygen availability, soil organic matter, and nitrogen availability. Under some, but not all soil conditions, white-rot fungi may produce transformation products from PCP, including pentachloroanisole (PCA), and non-extractable materials that may be products of polymerization with humic acids. Bacterial bioremediation agents generally mineralize a much greater proportion of PCP than do fungal agents. And, although radiotracer studies have indicated that PCP mineralization by bacteria in soil is not complete, bacterial production of non-extractable products from PCP in soil has not been documented. Because rate and extent of PCP degradation, as well as formation of transformation products, can differ among PCP-metabolizing microbes and can be influenced by soil conditions, the study described below compares the activity under similar soil conditions of two bacteria (strains of Pseudomonas and Flavorbacterium) and a fungus (Phanerochete sordida) with respect to laboratory-scale bioremediation of sandy, low-organic matter soil that was amended with known quantities of radiolabelled PCP.