More rapid dechlorination of 2,4-dichlorophenol using acclimated bacteria

Ning Yan, Meng An, Junyi Chu, Lifeng Cao, Ge Zhu, Weimin Wu, Lu Wang, Yongming Zhang, Bruce E. Rittmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The key step for anaerobic biodegradation of 2,4-dichlorophenol (2,4-DCP) is an initial dechlorination reaction, but Cl in the para-position is more difficult to remove than Cl in the ortho-position using normal 2,4-DCP-acclimated bacteria. In this work, a bacterial community previously acclimated to biodegrading 2,4-DCP slowly dechlorinated 4-chlorophenol (4-CP Cl only in the para-position), which limited mineralization. That community was exposed to the selective pressure of having 4-CP as its only organic substrate in order to generate a 4-CP-dechlorinating community. When the 4-CP-dechlorinating community was challenged with 2,4-DCP, 4-CP hardly accumulated, although the kinetics for 2,4-DCP biodegradation were slower. When the community acclimated to 4-CP was mixed with the community acclimated to 2,4-DCP, the 2,4-DCP removal rate remained high, and 4-CP was more rapidly biodegraded. The genera Treponema, Blvii28, Dechloromonas, Nitrospira, and Thauera were significantly more abundant in the 4-CP-dechlorinating biomass and may have played roles in 2,4-DCP dechlorination and mineralization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number124738
JournalBioresource Technology
StatePublished - Apr 2021


  • 2,4-dichlorophenol
  • Biodegradation
  • Dechlorination
  • Phylogenetic analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal


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