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Appl Environ Microbiol. 1995 Dec;61(12):4374-7.

Phenolic Azo Dye Oxidation by Laccase from Pyricularia oryzae.


Laccase oxidation of phenolic azo dyes was examined with a commercially available laccase from Pyricularia oryzae as the model. Methyl-, methoxy-, chloro-, and nitro-substituted derivatives of 4-(4(prm1)-sulfophenylazo)-phenol were examined as substrates for this laccase. Only the substituents on the phenolic ring were changed. Among the dyes examined, only 2-methyl-, 2-methoxy-, 2,3-dimethyl-, 2,6-dimethyl-, 2,3-dimethoxy-, and 2,6-dimethoxy-substituted 4-(4(prm1)-sulfophenylazo)-phenol served as substrates. Preliminary kinetic studies suggest that 2,6-dimethoxy-substituted 4-(4(prm1)-sulfophenylazo)-phenol is the best substrate. Laccase oxidized the 2,6-dimethyl derivative of 4-(4(prm1)-sulfophenylazo)-phenol to 4-sulfophenylhydroperoxide (SPH) and 2,6-dimethyl-1,4-benzoquinone. The 2-methyl- and 2-methoxy-substituted dyes were oxidized to SPH and either 2-methyl- or 2-methoxy-benzoquinone. Six products were formed from laccase oxidation of the 2,6-dimethoxy-substituted dye. Three of them were identified as SPH, 4-hydroxybenzenesulfonic acid, and 2,6-dimethoxybenzoquinone. A mechanism for the formation of benzoquinone and SPH from laccase oxidation of phenolic azo dyes is proposed. This study suggests that laccase oxidation can result in the detoxification of azo dyes.

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