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Res Microbiol. 2002 Jun;153(5):263-8.

Tolerance of bacteria to organic solvents.

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Goa College of Pharmacy, Panjim, India.


Organic-solvent-tolerant bacteria are a relatively novel group of extremophilic microorganisms. They overcome the toxic and destructive effects of organic solvents due to the presence of various adaptive mechanisms. Extensive studies done on the toluene tolerance of certain Pseudomonas strains have led to an understanding of the mechanisms of organic solvent tolerance involving novel adaptations such as the toluene efflux pumps, cis-trans isomerisation of membrane fatty acids, rapid membrane repair mechanisms, etc. Organic-solvent-tolerant mutants of Escherichia coli have been constructed and genes enhancing such tolerance characterised. However, there is practically no information available on the tolerance mechanisms of the reported Gram-positive organic-solvent-tolerant bacterial strains like Bacillus, Rhodococcus and Arthrobacter. This review discusses the general aspects of organic-solvent-tolerant bacteria, their history, biodiversity, mechanisms of tolerance and proposes certain probable adaptations of Gram-positive bacteria in tolerance to organic solvents.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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