Arthrobacter is a universal responder to di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP) contamination in soils from various geographical locations

Xiao Kong, Zhanbing Bai, Tuo Jin, Decai Jin*, Jiangang Pan, Xiangyang Yu, Tomislav Cernava

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Plasticizer phthalic acid esters (PAEs) are commonly found as contaminants in various soils. Previous studies indicated that their natural degradation can substantially differ among soil types; however, potential implications of the soil microbiome remained largely unexplored. Here, we have collected ten soil types from nine different geographical regions of China to investigate the degradation of DBP therein and role of bacteria in this process. Results showed that the degradation rate of DBP was lowest in nutrient-poor red soils from Jiangxi Province, while it was highest in fluvo-aquatic soil from Hebei Province. Bacterial community responses to DBP substantially differed in each of the analyzed soils. Arthrobacter is known for its broad-spectrum activity in terms of DBP degradation in soil and was therefore implemented as bioremediating inoculant in many polluted environments. In the present study, network analyses indicated that synergism between soil bacteria increased following exposure to DBP. Arthrobacter and Sphingomonas were found to expand their positive interactions with other members of the microbiome in DBP-contaminated soils. The overall findings of our study provide a basis for biomarker development for detection of DBP contaminations and an extended basis for future bioremediation approaches based on beneficial bacteria.

Original languageEnglish
Article number126914
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2022


  • Arthrobacter
  • Bacterial community
  • Di-n-butyl phthalate
  • Soil microbiome
  • Sphingomonas

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


Dive into the research topics of 'Arthrobacter is a universal responder to di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP) contamination in soils from various geographical locations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this