Author(s): Lomans BP, Leijdekkers P, Wesselink JJ, Bakkes P, Pol A,
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Abstract Methanethiol (MT) and dimethyl sulfide (DMS) have been shown to be the dominant volatile organic sulfur compounds in freshwater sediments. Previous research demonstrated that in these habitats MT and DMS are derived mainly from the methylation of sulfide. In order to identify the microorganisms that are responsible for this type of MT and DMS formation, several sulfide-rich freshwater sediments were amended with two potential methyl group-donating compounds, syringate and 3,4,5-trimethoxybenzoate (0.5 mM). The addition of these methoxylated aromatic compounds resulted in excess accumulation of MT and DMS in all sediment slurries even though methanogenic consumption of MT and DMS occurred. From one of the sediment slurries tested, a novel anaerobic bacterium was isolated with syringate as the sole carbon source. The strain, designated Parasporobacterium paucivorans, produced MT and DMS from the methoxy groups of syringate. The hydroxylated aromatic residue (gallate) was converted to acetate and butyrate. Like Sporobacterium olearium, another methoxylated aromatic compound-degrading bacterium, the isolate is a member of the XIVa cluster of the low-GC-content Clostridiales group. However, the new isolate differs from all other known methoxylated aromatic compound-degrading bacteria because it was able to degrade syringate in significant amounts only in the presence of sulfide.
This article was published in Appl Environ Microbiol
and referenced in Journal of Petroleum & Environmental Biotechnology