Friday, August 7, 2009

Superbug: solution to the oil pollution.

Over 10 million metric tons of petro-pollutants enter the sea ecosystem each year and killing birds, shell fish, fishes, invertibrates and other sea animals and planktons. This poses more adverse effect on marine life and food chain.

To solve the problem of sea petro-pollution, the Indian-born American scientist, Dr. Anand Mohan Chakravarty succeded in producing a microbacterial SUPERBUG by genetically engineered strain of Pseudomonas putida. It is capable of utilising complex chemical compounds like hydrocarbons. It is also called oil eating bug.

Petro-products, including oils, genrally contains octane, xylene, camphor and naphthalene. No single strain of P. putida is able to digest all these four petro-chemical; for this needed four strains of P. putida with four different plasmid DNA's. Dr. Anand introduced four plasmid DNA's from four different strains into one single cell of Pseudomonas putida and formed a SUPERBUG.

Pseudomonas is an aerobic and gram-negative bacterium belongs to Pseudomonadaceae family of bacteria. P. aeruginosa and P. fluorescens are fluorescent pigment forming bacteria.
This superbug utilise a number of toxic chemicals like chlorobenzenes, 2.4-D, 2.4.5-T, and petro-chemicals like octane, camphor, etc. This discovery of superbug really open the door for checking oil-pollution in seas. [ Prabhat Misra ].