Periodic Reporting for period 2 - NETPAC (Microbial networks for PAC cycling in polluted soils)
Reporting period: 2017-06-16 to 2018-06-15
- To provide the first evidence of the direct implication of a bacterial metabolite of pyrene in increased soil genotoxicity after bioremediation. Formation of this heretofore unknown metabolite was associated to the activity of recently described groups of pyrene-degrading bacteria.
- To develop a stable isotope assisted metabolomics approach to understand PAH-metabolism in situ. This method allowed reconstructing compound specific metabolic pathways in soils.
- To identify an unprecedented abundance and diversity of N-PACs in PAH-contaminated soils by the application of nontarget high resolution analytical methods.
Dissemination of NETPAC has already resulted in three publications in international top-ranked scientific journals in the field of environmental sciences (Environmental Science & Technology and Environmental Science & Technology Letters), and a book chapter that has been recently accepted for publication in the third edition of Comprehensive Biotechnology. Additional publications are expected to be delivered soon. Impact of NETPAC on a broader audience, including not only scientists, but also stakeholders and legislators has been achieved through communications in eleven international conferences including ISME conference, the Battelle Bioremediation Symposium, the SETAC Europe and ACS Annual Meetings, the European Bioremediation Conference and AquaConsoil.
NETPAC has identified microbial key players involved in the degradation of model PACs of concern in contaminated soils (HMW-PAHs, oxy-PAHs and N-PACs), and assessed their occurrence during active bioremediation processes. Of special relevance and novelty is the work on oxy-PAHs and N-PACs. The identification of the microbial communities and metabolic pathways involved in the in situ cycling, and eventual formation (for oxy-PAHs), of these three classes of contaminants opens new lines of evidence on how to modulate these processes in the environment. NETPAC provides new tools to achieve a more effective and predictable remediation, with PAC removal below current reference levels, and minimizing the potential risks associated with this biotechnology.