Identification of various laccases induced by anthracene and contribution to its degradation in a Mediterranean coastal pine litter.

PMID 21663935


Mediterranean coastal ecosystems are known to be highly subject to natural and anthropic environmental stress. In this study, we examine the effects of anthracene as a common pollutant on the total microbial communities from a Pinus halepensis litter of a typical Mediterranean coastal site (Les Calanques, Marseille). The main objective was to identify the microbial factors leading the resilience of this ecosystem. Two questions were addressed: (i) how lignin-degrading enzymes (Laccase, Lignin-peroxidase and Mn-peroxidase) are affected by the presence of this molecule, (ii) whether the indigenous consortia are involved in its degradation in mesocosms under favorable incubation conditions (25 °C, 60% WHC) and after different time intervals (1 and 3 month(s)). We found a strong increase in laccase production in the presence of anthracene after 3 months, together with anthracene degradation (28%±5). Moreover 9,10-anthraquinone is detected as the product of anthracene oxidation after 3 months. However neither lignin-peroxidase activity nor Mn-peroxidase activity is detected. Laccase proteins directly extracted from litter were sequenced via Nano-LC-MS/MS and reveal twelve different peptide sequences induced by the presence of anthracene in the mesocoms. Our study confirms the major detoxification role of this enzymatic system and highlights the high degradation potential of fungal species inhabiting P. halepensis litter, a factor in the resilience of Mediterranean ecosystems.