Recent advances in the bioremediation of persistent organic pollutants via biomolecular engineering

Lui Ang Ee, Huimin Zhao, Jeffrey P. Obbard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

With recent advances in biomolecular engineering, the bioremediation of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) using genetically modified microorganisms has become a rapidly growing area of research for environmental protection. Two main biomolecular approaches, rational design and directed evolution, have been developed to engineer enhanced microorganisms and enzymes for the biodegradation of POPs. This review describes the most recent developments and applications of these biomolecular tools for enhancing the capability of microorganisms to bioremediate three major classes of POPs - polycyclic aromatic hydrocabons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and pesticides. Most of the examples focused on the redesign of various features of the enzymes involved in the bioremediation of POPs, including the enzyme expression level, enzymatic activity and substrate specificity. Overall, the rapidly expanding potential of biomolecular engineering techniques has created the exciting potential of remediating some of the most recalcitrant and hazardous compounds in the environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)487-496
Number of pages10
JournalEnzyme and Microbial Technology
Volume37
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 3 2005

Keywords

  • Biomolecular engineering
  • Bioremediation
  • Directed evolution
  • Persistent organic pollutants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Biotechnology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

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