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Microorganisms 2017, 5(3), 47; doi:10.3390/microorganisms5030047

MALDI-TOF MS for the Identification of Cultivable Organic-Degrading Bacteria in Contaminated Groundwater near Unconventional Natural Gas Extraction Sites

1
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX 76019-0065, USA
2
Affiliate of the Collaborative Laboratories for Environmental Analysis and Remediation, The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX 76019-0065, USA
3
CBQF—Centro de Biotecnologia e Química Fina—Laboratório Associado, Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Universidade Católica Portuguesa/Porto, Rua Arquiteto Lobão Vital, Apartado 2511, 4202-401 Porto, Portugal
4
Biology Department and CESAM, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
5
Inform Environmental, LLC, Dallas, TX 75206, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 June 2017 / Revised: 21 July 2017 / Accepted: 7 August 2017 / Published: 10 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Microorganisms for Environmental and Industrial Applications)
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Abstract

Groundwater quality and quantity is of extreme importance as it is a source of drinking water in the United States. One major concern has emerged due to the possible contamination of groundwater from unconventional oil and natural gas extraction activities. Recent studies have been performed to understand if these activities are causing groundwater contamination, particularly with respect to exogenous hydrocarbons and volatile organic compounds. The impact of contaminants on microbial ecology is an area to be explored as alternatives for water treatment are necessary. In this work, we identified cultivable organic-degrading bacteria in groundwater in close proximity to unconventional natural gas extraction. Pseudomonas stutzeri and Acinetobacter haemolyticus were identified using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time-of-flight-mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS), which proved to be a simple, fast, and reliable method. Additionally, the potential use of the identified bacteria in water and/or wastewater bioremediation was studied by determining the ability of these microorganisms to degrade toluene and chloroform. In fact, these bacteria can be potentially applied for in situ bioremediation of contaminated water and wastewater treatment, as they were able to degrade both compounds. View Full-Text
Keywords: mass spectrometry; hydraulic fracturing; groundwater; microorganism identification; bioremediation; toluene; chloroform mass spectrometry; hydraulic fracturing; groundwater; microorganism identification; bioremediation; toluene; chloroform
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Santos, I.C.; Martin, M.S.; Carlton, D.D.; Amorim, C.L.; Castro, P.M.L.; Hildenbrand, Z.L.; Schug, K.A. MALDI-TOF MS for the Identification of Cultivable Organic-Degrading Bacteria in Contaminated Groundwater near Unconventional Natural Gas Extraction Sites. Microorganisms 2017, 5, 47.

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