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Biodegradation of Quinolphos by Defined Microbial Consortium

Radha S, Devi Prasad AG and Manonmani HK

Quinolphos (O,O-diethyl O-quinoxalin-2-yl phosphorothiate) is a synthetic organo-phosphate, non-systemic, broad spectrum insecticide and acaricide, acting as a cholinesterase inhibitor in contact with stomach and respiratory system. A microbial consortium that can utilize quinolphos as a sole source of carbon and energy was isolated from soil through a novel technique involving an initial enrichment in a column reactor followed by enrichment in a shake flask. Exposure to Quinolphos and its metabolites can affect the human health. A diverse range of microorganisms responsible for Quinolphos degradation has been reported. In the present investigation, a new microbial consortium degrading Quinolphos has been developed. Factors such induction, inoculum level, concentration of the substrate, soil pH, soil moisture, etc., affecting degradation were also studied. Inoculum level of 500 μg protein/mL and a pH 7.5 at ambient temperature (26–28°C) resulted in degradation of Quinolphos upto 50 ppm.