Environmental Research ( IF 5.715 ) Pub Date : 2020-10-15 , DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2020.110332 Rakeshkumar Yadav; Vinay Rajput; Mahesh Dharne
Rapid industrialization contributes substantially to xenobiotic pollutants in rivers. As a result, most of the rivers traversing urban settlements are in significantly deteriorated conditions. These pollutants are recalcitrant, requiring robust catabolic machinery for their complete transformation into bioavailable and non-toxic by-products. Microbes are versatile dwellers that could adapt to such contaminants by using them as a source of nutrients during growth. However, efficient bioremediation requires an in-depth knowledge of microbial diversity and their metabolism related genes in the polluted niches. We employed MinION shotgun sequencing, to comprehend the biodegradation related genes and their function potential operating in the polluted urban riverine system of Western India. A vast number of catabolic genes were detected for the xenobiotic pollutants such as Benzoate, Nitrotoluene, Aminobenzoate, Drug metabolism, and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons. Aerobic, and anaerobic catabolism genes, were mapped for their ability of degradation of xenobiotics. Interestingly, catabolism profiles of multiple aromatic compounds culminated into the Benzoate degradation pathway, suggesting it as a plausible central pathway for the autochthonous bacterial communities. Further mapping with RemeDB database, predicted plastic and dye degrading enzymes. Moreover, the diversity indices for the pollutant degrading enzymes suggested little variations (R2 value of 18%) between the city and non-city (outskirts of city limits) riverine stretch indicating the impact of industrialization in the outskirts of the city stretch as well. Altogether, this study would serve as a preliminary baseline for future explorations concerning river cleaning programs and also exploiting such microbes for bioremediation applications.