© 2017 Elsevier B.V. 1,1,2-Trichloroethane (1,1,2-TCA) is a non-flammable organic solvent and common environmental contaminant in groundwater. Organohalide-respiring bacteria are key microorganisms to remediate 1,1,2-TCA because they can gain metabolic energy during its dechlorination under anaerobic conditions. However, all current isolates produce hazardous end products such as vinyl chloride, monochloroethane or 1,2-dichloroethane that accumulate in the medium. Here, we constructed a syntrophic co-culture of Dehalogenimonas and Dehalococcoides mccartyi strains to achieve complete detoxification of 1,1,2-TCA to ethene. In this co-culture, Dehalogenimonas transformed 1,1,2-TCA via dihaloelimination to vinyl chloride, whereas Dehalococcoides reduced vinyl chloride via hydrogenolysis to ethene. Molasses, pyruvate, and lactate supported full dechlorination of 1,1,2-TCA in serum bottle co-cultures. Scale up of the cultivation to a 5-L bioreactor operating for 76 d in fed-batch mode was successful with pyruvate as substrate. This synthetic combination of bacteria with known complementary metabolic capabilities demonstrates the potential environmental relevance of microbial cooperation to detoxify 1,1,2-TCA.
- Fed-batch reactor
- Organohalide-respiring bacteria