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Open Access Research article

Chemotaxis of Burkholderia sp. Strain SJ98 towards chloronitroaromatic compounds that it can metabolise

Janmejay Pandey12, Narinder K Sharma13, Fazlurrahman Khan1, Anuradha Ghosh13, John G Oakeshott4, Rakesh K Jain1 and Gunjan Pandey4*

Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Microbial Technology, Sector 39A, Chandigarh 160036, India

2 Georgia Health Science University, Augusta GA 30912, USA

3 Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506, USA

4 CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences, GPO Box 1700, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia

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BMC Microbiology 2012, 12:19  doi:10.1186/1471-2180-12-19

Published: 1 February 2012

Abstract

Background

Burkholderia sp. strain SJ98 is known for its chemotaxis towards nitroaromatic compounds (NACs) that are either utilized as sole sources of carbon and energy or co-metabolized in the presence of alternative carbon sources. Here we test for the chemotaxis of this strain towards six chloro-nitroaromatic compounds (CNACs), namely 2-chloro-4-nitrophenol (2C4NP), 2-chloro-3-nitrophenol (2C3NP), 4-chloro-2-nitrophenol (4C2NP), 2-chloro-4-nitrobenzoate (2C4NB), 4-chloro-2-nitrobenzoate (4C2NB) and 5-chloro-2-nitrobenzoate (5C2NB), and examine its relationship to the degradation of such compounds.

Results

Strain SJ98 could mineralize 2C4NP, 4C2NB and 5C2NB, and co-metabolically transform 2C3NP and 2C4NB in the presence of an alternative carbon source, but was unable to transform 4C2NP under these conditions. Positive chemotaxis was only observed towards the five metabolically transformed CNACs. Moreover, the chemotaxis was induced by growth in the presence of the metabolisable CNAC. It was also competitively inhibited by the presence of nitroaromatic compounds (NACs) that it could metabolise but not by succinate or aspartate.

Conclusions

Burkholderia sp. strain SJ98 exhibits metabolic transformation of, and inducible chemotaxis towards CNACs. Its chemotactic responses towards these compounds are related to its previously demonstrated chemotaxis towards NACs that it can metabolise, but it is independently inducible from its chemotaxis towards succinate or aspartate.