Detection of known and novel genes encoding aromatic ring-hydroxylating dioxygenases in soils and in aromatic hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria

FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2002 Oct 29;216(1):61-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-6968.2002.tb11415.x.


Primers were designed and successfully used to screen aromatic hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria for the presence of class II aromatic ring-hydroxylating dioxygenase (RHD) genes and to amplify novel RHD genes from DNA extracted from soil using the polymerase chain reaction. Two previously undiscovered groups of genes encoding putative class II RHDs, designated the S and T clusters, were found in RHD different soil samples. Only one of 70 RHD gene fragments amplified from these soil samples could be assigned to a cluster of previously reported RHD genes. These results suggest that distinct and potentially numerically dominant groups of as-yet unrecognized aromatic hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria exist in soils.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Biodegradation, Environmental
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA Primers
  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis*
  • DNA, Bacterial / classification
  • DNA, Bacterial / isolation & purification
  • Genes, Bacterial*
  • Hydrocarbons, Aromatic / metabolism*
  • Hydroxylation
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Oxygenases / genetics*
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Soil Microbiology*


  • DNA Primers
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Hydrocarbons, Aromatic
  • Oxygenases