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报告题目:Microbial Strategies in Detoxification of the Endocrine-disrupting Plasticizers Dimethyl Phthalate Esters
顾继东, 香港大学生命科学院教授,博士生导师。毕业于黑龙江八一农垦大学,获农学学士学位;加拿大阿尔伯塔大学(University of Alberta)土壤生物化学及微生物学硕士;美国弗吉尼亚理工学院 (Virginia Tech) 微生物生态学博士。在美国马萨诸塞州洛厄尔研究基地(University of Massachusetts Lowell Research Foundation)和哈佛大学(Harvard University)完成博士后研究,于1993-1998年在美国哈佛大学研究工作,1999应聘香港大学理学院。
顾教授多年来从事环境科学方面的研究,目前领导的科研团队在厌氧氨氧化细菌的遗传多样性及其生理生态特性、典型环境污染物的微生物降解及机理探讨、环境污染物的生物毒性等方面都已开展了大量的工作,而且这些研究工作均处于世界领先水平。在微生物的降解和环境毒理领域发表SCI学术论文220余篇。已出版专著1部《Environmental Microbiology, 2nd ed., Wiley-Blackwell. 2010》,担任国际杂志《Microbiotechnology, Ecotoxicology and Bioremediation》的主编助理;《Ecotoxicology》、《Environmental Geochemistry and Health》和《International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation》 的责任编辑;《Biodegradation》、《Ecologic Science》、《Journal of Polymers and the Environment》,《Microbes and the Environment》和《The Open Proteomics Journal》等的编委会编委。
Dimethyl phthalate (DMT) and its isomers, dimethyl isophthalate (DMI) and dimethyl phthalate (DMP), are widely used in plastics manufacturing and product formulation. Known for their endocrine-disrupting and estrogenic activity, this class of compounds might interfere with the reproductive system and normal reproductive development of animals and humans. As a result, they have been listed as priority pollutants for control by the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Microbial degradation of ortho-, meta- and para-phthalate esters was investigated with pure culture of bacteria isolated from activated sludge, mangrove sediment and ocean sediment of the South China Sea. In general, the initial degradation involved a series of hydrolytic reactions to produce monophthalate ester and phthalate prior to cleavage of the aromatic ring structure. Degradation of the phthalate esters may involve participation of more than one bacterium to achieve the mineralization; consortium of microorganisms indigenous to the test environments, in particular, is responsible for the mineralization of environmental pollutant through biochemical cooperation specific to the bacterium at specific degradation step. Such cooperation biochemically allows maintenance of higher diversity of bacteria in the ecosystems.
Metals are also common environmental pollutants and can be detoxified by selective microorganisms through some biochemical reactions. Microbial transformation is sound in laboratory conditions and for reactor systems, but removal of metals from soils and physical environment may need the assimilation and accumulation of them into vegetative parts of the plants to achieve thorough removal of them from the environmental matrices. Bioremediation should be assessed with realistic objectives and achievable means for practical applications to clean contaminated ecosystem. Selective examples will be used to highlight the mechanisms involved in microbial transformation and bioremediation applications for organic and inorganic pollutants to achieve environmental cleaning up.

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