Biodegradation of PFASs from Groundwater and Soil

University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT team photo
This project consists in co-cultivation of different white rot fungi strains and different bacterial strains and testing what combined microorganisms are capable of producing the enzymes needed to break the Carbon-Fluorine bonds present in PFAS compounds such as PFOS and PFOA.

The team consists of PhD Student Ruby Diaz, Dr. Ramesh Goel (PI) and Dr. Bryn Dentinger (Co-PI).

EPA P3 Video Presentation

Poster (click to open a full size image): 

The main goal for this project is to break the carbon-fluorine bonds present in PFAS compounds by using a combination of fungi and/or bacteria. Some bacteria and fungi are known to produce powerful enzymes capable of biodegrading xenobiotic compounds.
The proposed research includes the development of an in-situ bioremediation technology that can be implemented to breakdown the PFASs contaminants present in soils and groundwater systems. The development of this technology includes co-cultivation, directed evolution, enzyme optimization, gene expression and genetic engineering.