δ13C and δ37Cl Isotope Fractionation to Characterize Aerobic vs Anaerobic Degradation of Trichloroethylene

Almog Gafni, Christina Lihl, Faina Gelman, Martin Elsner, Anat Bernstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Trichloroethylene (TCE) is a carcinogenic organic chemical impacting water resources worldwide. Its breakdown by reductive vs oxidative degradation involves different types of chemical bonds. Hence, if distinct isotope effects are reflected in dual element (carbon and chlorine) isotope values, such trends could help distinguishing both processes in the environment. This work explored dual element isotope trends associated with TCE oxidation by two pure bacterial cultures: Pseudomonas putida F1 and Methylosinus trichosporium OB3b, where the latter expresses either soluble methane-monooxygenase (sMMO) or particulate methane-monooxygenase (pMMO). Carbon and chlorine isotope enrichment factors of TCE (ϵ13C = -11.5, -2.4, and -4.2‰ ϵ37Cl = 0.3, -1.3, and -2.4‰, respectively) differed strongly between the strains. The dual element isotope trend for strain F1 (ϵ13C/ϵ37Cl = -38) reflected, as expected, primary carbon and negligible chlorine isotope effects, whereas unexpectedly large chlorine isotope effects became apparent in the trend obtained with strain OB3b (ϵ13C/ϵ37Cl = +1.7 for sMMO and pMMO). Therefore, although dual element isotope analysis partly reflects predicted differences in oxidative vs reductive (ϵ13C/ϵ37Cl = 3.4-5.7) degradation, the unexpected OB3b fractionation data may challenge field interpretation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)202-208
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology Letters
Volume5
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 10 Apr 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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