We have over 12,000 students, from over 100 countries, within one of the safest campuses in the UK


93% of Lancaster students go into work or further study within six months of graduating

Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > Biogenic volatile organic compounds as a potent...
View graph of relations

« Back

Biogenic volatile organic compounds as a potential stimulator for organic contaminant degradation by soil microorganisms.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


Journal publication date01/2009
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Number of pages9
Original languageEnglish


The effects of monoterpenes on the degradation of 14C-2,4-dichlorophenol (DCP) were investigated in soils collected from areas surrounding monoterpene and non-monoterpene-emitting vegetation. Indigenous microorganisms degraded 14C-2,4-DCP to 14CO2, after 1 d contact time. Degradation was enhanced by prior exposure of the soils to 2,4-DCP for 32 d, increasing extents of mineralisation up to 60%. Monoterpene amendments further enhanced 2,4-DCP degradation, but only following pre-exposure to both 2,4-DCP and monoterpene, with total 2,4-DCP mineralisation extents of up to 71%. Degradation was greatest at the higher monoterpene concentrations (≥1 μg kg−1). Total mineralisation extents were similar between concentrations, but higher than the control and the 0.1 μg kg−1 amendment, indicating that increases in monoterpene concentration has a diminishing enhancing effect. We suggest that monoterpenes can stimulate the biodegradation of 2,4-DCP by indigenous soil microorganisms and that monoterpene amendment in soils is an effective strategy for removing organic contaminants. A amendment of soils with monoterpenes may induce organic contaminant degradation by indigenous soil microorganisms.