Studies on Microbial Degradation of Toxic Phosphorus Esters. Part 1. Detoxification of O,O-Dimethyl-O-(2-carbomethoxy-1-methylvinyl) Phosphate by Soil Bacteria.
AIR FORCE ARMAMENT LAB EGLIN AFB FL
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In an attempt to find a new method for detoxifying cholinesterase-inhibiting, organophosphorus compounds, studies were undertaken to isolate bacteria capable of degrading O,O-dimethyl-O-2-carbomethoxy-1-methylvinyl phosphate Phosdrin. Degradation of the insecticide was determined by gas chromatography, while decreased toxicity was confirmed by measuring cholinesterase activity with a recording pH stat. Of the thirty cultures screened, two showed 80-90 degradation of the original 20 ppm Phosdrin in 10 days, with a corresponding decrease in toxicity. One of the cultures was isolated from soil collected on Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, and the other as a laboratory contaminant. The bacteria were identified as two different strains of Bacillus megaterium. Author