Microbial 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene degradation: could we learn from (bio)chemistry for bioremediation and vice versa?
Pseudomonas putida GG04 and Bacillus SF have been successfully incorporated into an explosive formulation to enhance biotransformation of TNT residues and/or explosives which fail to detonate due to technical faults. The incorporation of the microorganisms into the explosive did not affect the quality of the explosive (5 years storage) in terms of detonation velocity while complete biotransformation of TNT moieties upon transfer in liquid media was observed after 5 days. The incorporated microorganisms reduced TNT sequentially leading to the formation of hydroxylaminodinitrotoluenes (HADNT), 4-amino-2,6-dinitrotoluenes; 2-amino-4,6-dinitrotoluenes, different azoxy compounds; 2,6-diaminonitrotoluenes (2,4-DAMNT) and 2,4-diaminonitrotoluenes (2,6-DAMNT). However, the accumulation of AMDNT and DAMNT (major dead-end metabolites) was effectively prevented by incorporating guaiacol and catechol during the biotransformation process.