Degradation of 4-bromophenol by Ochrobactrum sp. HI1 isolated from desert soil: pathway and isotope effects

Rotem Golan, Faina Gelman, Tomasz Kuder, Alicia A. Taylor, Zeev Ronen, Anat Bernstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Anthropogenic activities have introduced elevated levels of brominated phenols to the environment. These compounds are associated with toxic and endocrine effects, and their environmental fate is of interest. An aerobic strain Ochrobactrum sp. HI1 was isolated from soils in the vicinity of a bromophenol production plant and tested for its ability to degrade 4-bromophenol (4-BP). A ring hydroxylation pathway of degradation was proposed, using the evidence from degradation intermediates analysis and multi-element (C, Br, H) compound-specific isotope analysis. Benzenetriol and 4-bromocatechol were detected during degradation of 4-bromophenol. Degradation resulted in a normal carbon isotope effect (ε C = −1.11 ± 0.09‰), and in insignificant bromine and hydrogen isotope fractionation. The dual C–Br isotope trend for ring hydroxylation obtained in the present study differs from the trends expected for reductive debromination or photolysis. Thus, the isotope data reported herein can be applied in future field studies to delineate aerobic biodegradation processes and differentiate them from other natural attenuation processes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-46
Number of pages10
Issue number1
StatePublished - 15 Feb 2019


  • Biodegradation
  • Bromophenol
  • Compound specific isotope analysis (CSIA)
  • Ochrobactrum sp. HI1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Microbiology
  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Pollution


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