Partially oxidized polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons show an increased bioavailability and biodegradability

Rogier Meulenberg, Huub H.M. Rijnaarts, Hans J. Doddema, Jim A. Field

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

107 Scopus citations


Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons have a low water solubility and tend to adsorb on soil particles, which both result in slow bioremediation processes. Many microorganisms, known for their ability to degrade polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, only partially oxidize these compounds. White rot fungi, for instance, convert polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons to more water soluble and bioavailable products. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon metabolites were more readily mineralized by natural mixed bacterial cultures, like activated sludge and soil, than the parent polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon compounds. These results suggest that sequential breakdown by white rot fungi followed by indigenous bacteria leads to an effective polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon bioremediation process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-49
Number of pages5
JournalFEMS Microbiology Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 1997


  • Bioavailability
  • Biodegradability
  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon
  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon degradation
  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon metabolite
  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon oxidation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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