Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Science. 1987 Dec 4;238(4832):1395-8.

Assemblage of ortho cleavage route for simultaneous degradation of chloro- and methylaromatics.

Author information

  • 1Department of Medical Biochemistry, University of Geneva, Switzerland.


Genetic engineering is a powerful means of accelerating the evolution of new biological activities and has considerable potential for constructing microorganisms that can degrade environmental pollutants. Critical enzymes from five different catabolic pathways of three distinct soil bacteria have been combined in patchwork fashion into a functional ortho cleavage route for the degradation of methylphenols and methylbenzoates. The new bacterium thereby evolved was able to degrade and grow on mixtures of chloro- and methylaromatics that were toxic even for the bacteria that could degrade the individual components of the mixtures. Except for one enzymatic step, the pathway was fully regulated and its component enzymes were only synthesized in response to the presence of pathway substrates.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk