Description: A method is described for identifying soil microbial strains which may be bacterial degraders of pollutants. This method includes: Placing a concentration of a pollutant in a substantially closed container; placing the container in a sample of soil for a period of time ranging from one minute to several hours; retrieving the container and collecting its contents; microscopically determining the identity of the bacteria present. Different concentrations of the pollutant can be used to determine which bacteria respond to each concentration. The method can be used for characterizing a polluted site or for looking for naturally occurring biological degraders of the pollutant. Then bacteria identified as degraders of the pollutant and as chemotactically attracted to the pollutant are used to innoculate contaminated soil. To enhance the effect of the bacteria on the pollutant, nutrients are cyclicly provided to the bacteria then withheld to alternately build up the size of the bacterial colony or community and then allow it to degrade the pollutant.
Date: March 4, 1991
Creator: Hazen, T. C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department