Toronto Metropolitan University
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Evaluation of the Transfer of the TOL Plasmid Pseudomonas Putida to Groundwater-Derived Biofilms in a Model Rock-Fracture Aquifer

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posted on 2023-05-25, 15:21 authored by Matthew Starek
Non-aqueous phase liquids (NAPLs) can become entrapped in subsurface rock fractures and become a long-term groundwater contaminant source. While remediation technologies exist, they can be expensive. Subsurface microorganisms can also degrade NAPLs trapped in the subsurface; however, this is a slow process. The possibility of enhancing microbial degradation of NAPLs via a plasmid transfer mechanism in a model rock fracture aquifer was explored. There was no indication that introduction of donor strain Pseudomonas putida SM1443::gfp2x-pWW0::dsRed into the model system led to transfer of the degradative TOL plasmid pWWO, or led to increased degradation of model NPL toluene. Plate matings with the donor strain and a groundwater-derived microbial consortium indicated that few potential recipients existed in the community. Nutrient concentration was ruled out as a limiting factor of plasmid transfer.





  • Master of Science


  • Molecular Science

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • Thesis