Kerosene Biodegradation by Highly Efficient Indigenous Bacteria Isolated From Hydrocarbon-Contaminated Sites

Microbiol Insights. 2023 Mar 6;16:11786361221150759. doi: 10.1177/11786361221150759. eCollection 2023.


Kerosene is widely used in Ethiopia as a household fuel (for lighting and heating), as a solvent in paint and grease, and as a lubricant in glass cutting. It causes environmental pollution and escorts to loss of ecological functioning and health problems. Therefore, this research was designed to isolate, identify, and characterize indigenous kerosene-degrading bacteria that are effective in cleaning ecological units that have been contaminated by kerosene. Soil samples were collected from hydrocarbon-contaminated sites (flower farms, garages, and old-aged asphalt roads) and spread-plated on mineral salt medium (Bushnell Hass Mineral Salts Agar Medium: BHMS), which consists of kerosene as the only carbon source. Seven kerosene-degrading bacterial species were isolated, 2 from flower farms, 3 from garage areas, and 2 from asphalt areas. Three genera from hydrocarbon-contaminated sites were identified, including Pseudomonas, Bacillus, and Acinetobacter using biochemical characterization and the Biolog database. Growth studies in the presence of various concentrations of kerosene (1% and 3% v/v) showed that the bacterial isolates could metabolize kerosene as energy and biomass. Thereby, a gravimetric study was performed on bacterial strains that proliferated well on a BHMS medium with kerosene. Remarkably, bacterial isolates were able to degrade 5% kerosene from 57.2% to 91% in 15 days. Moreover, 2 of the most potent isolates, AUG2 and AUG1, resulted in 85% and 91% kerosene degradation, respectively, when allowed to grow on a medium containing kerosene. In addition, 16S rRNA gene analysis indicated that strain AAUG1 belonged to Bacillus tequilensis, whereas isolate AAUG showed the highest similarity to Bacillus subtilis. Therefore, these indigenous bacterial isolates have the potential to be applied for kerosene removal from hydrocarbon-contaminated sites and the development of remediation approaches.

PMID:36895787 | PMC:PMC9989413 | DOI:10.1177/11786361221150759


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