Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Nat Rev Microbiol. 2015 Jun;13(6):388-96. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro3452. Epub 2015 May 6.

Using dispersants after oil spills: impacts on the composition and activity of microbial communities.

Author information

1
Department of Marine Sciences, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 30602, USA. Present address: Center for Applied Geosciences, University of Tübingen, 72074 Tübingen, Germany.
2
College of Marine Sciences, University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, Florida 33701, USA.
3
Department of Marine Sciences, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 30602, USA.

Abstract

Dispersants are globally and routinely applied as an emergency response to oil spills in marine ecosystems with the goal of chemically enhancing the dissolution of oil into water, which is assumed to stimulate microbially mediated oil biodegradation. However, little is known about how dispersants affect the composition of microbial communities or their biodegradation activities. The published findings are controversial, probably owing to variations in laboratory methods, the selected model organisms and the chemistry of different dispersant-oil mixtures. Here, we argue that an in-depth assessment of the impacts of dispersants on microorganisms is needed to evaluate the planning and use of dispersants during future responses to oil spills.

PMID:
25944491
DOI:
10.1038/nrmicro3452
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group
Loading ...
Support Center