Oxidation of persistent environmental pollutants by a white rot fungus

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Science  21 Jun 1985:
Vol. 228, Issue 4706, pp. 1434-1436
DOI: 10.1126/science.3925550


The white rot fungus Phanerochaete chrysosporium degraded DDT [1,1,-bis(4-chlorophenyl)-2,2,2-trichloroethane], 3,4,3',4'-tetrachlorobiphenyl, 2,4,5,2',-4',5'-hexachlorobiphenyl, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin, lindane (1,2,3,4,5,6-hexachlorocylohexane), and benzo[a]pyrene to carbon dioxide. Model studies, based on the use of DDT, suggest that the ability of Phanerochaete chrysosporium to metabolize these compounds is dependent on the extracellular lignin-degrading enzyme system of this fungus.