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Chem Biol Interact. 1993 Jun;87(1-3):141-8.

Screening of halophilic bacteria and Alteromonas species for organophosphorus hydrolyzing enzyme activity.

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Biochemical Decontamination Team, U.S. Army Edgewood Research, Development and Engineering Center, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21010-5423.


Previously, a G-type nerve agent degrading enzyme activity was found in a halophilic bacterial isolate designated JD6.5. This organism was tentatively identified as an unknown species of the genus Alteromonas. In order to determine whether this type of enzyme activity was common in other species of Alteromonas, a screening program was initiated. A number of Alteromonas species and five halophilic bacterial isolates were cultured and their crude cell extracts screened for hydrolytic activity against several organophosphorus chemical agents and other related compounds. The samples were also screened for cross-reactivity with a monoclonal antibody raised against the purified enzyme from JD6.5 and for hybridization with a DNA probe based on its N-terminal amino acid sequence A wide spectrum of activities and reactivities were seen, suggesting a significant heterogeneity between the functionally similar enzymes that are present in these bacterial species. Enzymes of the type described here have considerable potential for the decontamination and demilitarization of chemical warfare agents.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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