Biotechnology and Bioprocess Engineering 2022; 27(3): 423-431  
Degradation of 1,4-dioxane by Newly Isolated Acinetobacter sp. M21 with Molasses as the Auxiliary Substrate
Peng Wang, Tingchen Cui, Yadong Yang, Jialu Li, Yaoming Su, Na Liu, and Mei Hong
Peng Wang, Tingchen Cui, Yadong Yang, Jialu Li, Na Liu*, Mei Hong*
Key Laboratory of Groundwater Resources and Environment, Ministry of Education, College of New Energy and Environment, Jilin University, Changchun 130021, China
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Yaoming Su
South China Institute of Environmental Sciences, Ministry of Environmental Protection, Guangzhou 510700, China
Na Liu
Institute of Groundwater and Earth Science, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China
Received: July 29, 2021; Revised: October 14, 2021; Accepted: November 29, 2021; Published online: June 30, 2022.
© The Korean Society for Biotechnology and Bioengineering. All rights reserved.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
The elimination of 1,4-dioxane (dioxane), a persistent organic pollutant, is a great challenge owing to its high hydrophilicity and chemical stability. Cometabolic bioremediation technology is an effective approach to remove many organic pollutants. Because of its eco-friendly and inexpensive properties, molasses is widely used as an auxiliary biomaterial to clean up compound-contaminated sites. In this study, a newly isolated bacterium Acinetobacter sp. M21 could effectively remove dioxane using molasses without any apparent lag phase. Under the optimized molasses dosage of 0.3%, M21 could remove 500 mg/L dioxane by 60.0 ± 2.8% within 20 days with a maximum dioxane degradation rate of 1.3 ± 0.2 mg-dioxane/L/h in the first day, and exhibited extraordinary dioxane tolerance up to 1,000 mg/L, while so high dose of dioxane negatively affected the cell growth. The degradation pathway of dioxane was also determined, and was supported by the detection of 2-hydroxyethoxyacetic acid as the key metabolite of dioxane. High level degradation activity of M21 to 20 mg/L dioxane was maintained over a variable of pH (5-11), temperatures (15-45°C), and salinities (up to 8%, as NaCl wt). This is the first report linking the cometabolism of dioxane and molasses by Acinetobacter sp. M21, a bacterium that shows great potential for field dioxane bioremediation.
Keywords: 1,4-dioxane, molasses, Acinetobacter sp. M21, cometabolic biodegradation, biotransformation

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