Biotechnological procedures to select white rot fungi for the degradation of PAHs

Hwanhwi Lee, Yeongseon Jang, Yong Seok Choi, Min Ji Kim, Jaejung Lee, Hanbyul Lee, Joo Hyun Hong, Young Min Lee, Gyu Hyeok Kim, Jae Jin Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

115 Citations (Scopus)


White rot fungi are essential in forest ecology and are deeply involved in wood decomposition and the biodegradation of various xenobiotics. The fungal ligninolytic enzymes involved in these processes have recently become the focus of much attention for their possible biotechnological applications. Successful bioremediation requires the selection of species with desirable characteristics. In this study, 150 taxonomically and physiologically diverse white rot fungi, including 55 species, were investigated for their performance in a variety of biotechnological procedures, such as dye decolorization, gallic acid reaction, ligninolytic enzymes, and tolerance to four PAHs, phenanthrene, anthracene, fluoranthene, and pyrene. Among these fungi, six isolates showed the highest (> 90%) tolerance to both individual PAH and mixed PAHs. And six isolates oxidized gallic acid with dark brown color and they rapidly decolorized RBBR within ten days. These fungi revealed various profiles when evaluated for their biotechnological performance to compare the capability of degradation of PAHs between two groups selected. As the results demonstrated the six best species selected from gallic acid more greatly degraded four PAHs than the other isolates selected via tolerance test. It provided that gallic acid reaction test can be performed to rank the fungi by their ability to degrade the PAHs. Most of all, Peniophora incarnata KUC8836 and Phlebia brevispora KUC9033 significantly degraded the four PAHs and can be considered prime candidates for the degradation of xenobiotic compounds in environmental settings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-62
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Microbiological Methods
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Feb

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea(NRF) grant funded by the Korea government(MSIP) ( NRF-2013R1A2A2A01068649 ).


  • Biodegradation
  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)
  • White rot fungi (WRF)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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