Project ID: 1.3.1-VKE-2017-00013 | Web: cleanpah.org
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) (e.g. anthracene, phenanthrene, benzopyrene) can enter the soil with flue gases around oil refineries, oil pipelines and forest fires. These are slowly degradable, resistant materials, some of which are carcinogenic. Waste treatment companies undertake biodegradation treatment of soil up to a concentration of 5 mg / kg PAH and above this cc they deposit them as hazardous waste. New methods of regenerating PAH contaminated soils are being intensively researched around the world, mainly to remove PAH from soil by targeted microbiological degradation. In this project, two industrial participants and two large universities in Budapest combine their interdisciplinary resources to develop a worldwide new, marketable, soil bioremediation method for degradation of significant PAH molecules. The chemists, molecular biologists, microbiologists, bioinformatics, and mathematicians involved in the project are developing a new metagenomic, microbiological and enzymological approach. They are examining DNA sequences of naturally occurring microorganisms (metagenomic approach) and important enzymes present in microorganisms isolated from PAH contaminated soils. The innovative core of the project is the observation that PAH degrading enzymes present in bacteria can be described and produced without identifying the individual bacteria. Combined application of the new PAH degrading enzymes and PAH degrading micro-organisms (vaccines) will allow to remediate PAH contaminated soils that have been hopeless so far. Quantitative technology is being developed to monitor the soil function of the new vaccines. The newly developed technology will be globally marketable. Another significant result of the project is the complex evaluation of the developed technologies, the determination of the ecological footprint at the end of the term.