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Pathiraja, Pathiraja Mudiyanselage Gathanayana, Ph.D. thesis, Queensland University of Technology, Australia. 329 pp, 2018

The study outcomes confirmed that while a single bacterium may seem initially to possess positive characteristics for PCB biodegradation, it is highly probable that one microbe does not possess the enzymatic capability to degrade all or even most of the PCB congeners present in a contaminated environment. Microorganisms isolated from soil and sediments were studied and a few (Achromobacter, Ochrobactrum and Lysinibacillus in consortium) were found able to solubilize and degrade PCB mixtures effectively under alternating anaerobic and aerobic treatment conditions. A conventional 2-stage (TS) anaerobic-aerobic treatment was compared to an alternating (AN) anaerobic-aerobic treatment. The TS process was set up to provide an extended anaerobic phase of 4 weeks followed by a short aerobic phase of 2 weeks. In contrast, the AN treatment comprised weekly intervals of anaerobic and aerobic conditions. The AN approach performed more efficiently compared to TS treatment with yields of nearly 50% reduction in total PCBs reached within the first 2 weeks compared to 24% reduction obtained in TS treatment. https://eprints.qut.edu.au/122925/

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