What I Did:
I was studying bioremediation in the pesticide Lindane in contaminated soils. In order to characterize a known Lindane-degrading microorganism, Rhodococcus lindaniclasticus, and compare it to another organism, Sphingomonas paucimobilis, I designed a colorimetric assay for lindane degradation and tested the R. lindaniclasticus for genes of similar sequence to those found in S. paucimobilis.
How I Did It:
The colorimetric assay was based on a pH change that occurs when lindane is dechlorinated and HCl is formed. The indicator dye, phenol red, changes from red to yellow.
In order to compare the gene sequences and degradation pathways I made primers derived the LinA gene of S. paucimobilis, and attempted to isolate a similar gene from R. lindaniclasticus, by PCR of DNA prepared from the latter.
- The colorimetric assay indicates strong Lindane dechlorination activity by R. lindaniclasticus.
- Rhodococcus lindaniclasticus carries a gene for the linA enzyme with a sequence almost identical to that of Sphingomonas paucimobilis.