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Arch Microbiol. 1987;149(2):136-41.

Methanogenic degradation of acetone by an enrichment culture.

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Fachbereich Biologie-Mikrobiologie, Philipps-Universit├Ąt, Marburg, Federal Republic of Germany.


An anaerobic enrichment culture degraded 1 mol of acetone to 2 mol of methane and 1 mol of carbon dioxide. Two microorganisms were involved in this process, a filament-forming rod similar to Methanothrix sp. and an unknown rod with round to slightly pointed ends. Both organisms formed aggregates up to 300 micron in diameter. No fluorescing bacteria were observed indicating that hydrogen or formate-utilizing methanogens are not involved in this process. Acetate was utilized in this culture by the Methanothrix sp. Inhibition of methanogenesis by bromoethanesulfonic acid or acetylene decreased the acetone degradation rate drastically and led to the formation of 2 mol acetate per mol of acetone. Streptomycin completely inhibited acetone degradation, and neither acetate nor methane was formed. 14CO2 was incorporated exclusively into the C-1 atom of acetate indicating that acetone is degraded via carboxylation to an acetoacetate residue. It is concluded that acetone is degraded by a coculture of an eubacterium and an acetate-utilizing methanogen and that acetate is the only intermediate transferred between both. The energetical problems of the eubacterium converting acetone to acetate are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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