Reductive dehaholagenses (EC are a group of enzymes utilized in organohalide respiring bacteria.[1][2] These enzymes are mostly attached to the periplasmic side of the cytoplasmic membrane and play a central role in energy-conserving respiratory process for organohalide respiring bacteria by reducing organohalides. During such reductive dehalogenation reaction, organohalides are used as terminal electron acceptors. They catalyze the following general reactions:

R-X + 2 e + 2 H+ → R-H + H-X          
X-RR-X + 2 e + 2 H+ → R=R + 2X

These membrane-associated enzymes have attracted great interest for the detoxification of organohalide pollutants. Organohalide pollution is a serious global environmental issue affecting soil and groundwater; and reductive dehalogenases offer a promising natural tool for bioremediation.

Structure and mechanismEdit

Reductive dehalogenases are related to the cobamide (or vitamin B12) family of enzymes. They contain a cobalamin at its catalytic active site, where actual reductive reaction occurs. They also harbor iron− sulfur clusters that supply the reducing equivalents.[1][3] All membrane-associated dehalogenases harbor a N-terminal twin-arginine (TAT) signal sequence (RRXFXK), which is a conserved signal peptide for membrane protein translocation. Monomeric as well as dimeric forms were previously reported.

Enzymatic mechanism is still understudied; however, several studies reported various mechanisms involving an organocobalt adduct, a single-electron transfer, and a halogen–cobalt bond.[1]

Common reductive dehalogenases studiedEdit

Reductive dehalogenases from Dehalobacter speciesEdit

Reductive dehalogenases from Dehalococcoides speciesEdit

Reductive dehalogenases from Desulfitobacterium speciesEdit

Production methodsEdit

Native enzymesEdit

The examples are those that can dechlorinate chloroform (TmrA), PCE (PceA), TCE (TceA), and VC (VcrA).[2] Purification of such enzymes in native forms are reportedly difficult; however, a few such enzymes were purified to near homogeneity.[10][11] Ultracentrifugation, membrane solubilization and a series of liquid chromatography are the commonly employed techniques to the isolation and purification. A chloroform reducing dehalogenase is the latest reductive dehalogenase that was successfully produced and purified.[4]

Heterologous expressionsEdit

The researchers in the field had turned their interest to heterologous expression of the same enzymes due to difficulties in obtaining these enzymes in the native form. Only have recently a few recombinant reductive dehalogenases been functionally expressed, bringing the dehalogenase research into next levels.[12][7][3][5] Those successful efforts facilitate further investigations on their biochemical and structural properties.

Uses in bioremediationEdit

In recent years, research on reductive dehalogenases have attracted great interest from both academic and industrial researchers for their potential application in bioremediation of organohalide contamination.


  1. ^ a b c Jugder, Bat-Erdene; Ertan, Haluk; Lee, Matthew; Manefield, Michael; Marquis, Christopher P. (2015). "Reductive Dehalogenases Come of Age in Biological Destruction of Organohalides". Trends in Biotechnology. 33 (10): 595–610. doi:10.1016/j.tibtech.2015.07.004. ISSN 0167-7799. PMID 26409778.
  2. ^ a b Jugder, Bat-Erdene; Ertan, Haluk; Bohl, Susanne; Lee, Matthew; Marquis, Christopher P.; Manefield, Michael (2016). "Organohalide Respiring Bacteria and Reductive Dehalogenases: Key Tools in Organohalide Bioremediation". Frontiers in Microbiology. 7: 249. doi:10.3389/fmicb.2016.00249. ISSN 1664-302X. PMC 4771760. PMID 26973626.
  3. ^ a b Quezada, C.P.; Payne, K.A.P.; Leys, D. (2014). "Reductive dehalogenase structure suggests a mechanism for B12-dependent dehalogenation". Nature. 517 (7535): 513–516. doi:10.2210/pdb4ras/pdb. PMC 4968649. PMID 25327251.
  4. ^ a b Jugder, Bat-Erdene; Bohl, Susanne; Lebhar, Helene; Healey, Robert D.; Manefield, Mike; Marquis, Christopher P.; Lee, Matthew (2017-06-20). "A bacterial chloroform reductive dehalogenase: purification and biochemical characterization". Microbial Biotechnology. 10 (6): 1640–1648. doi:10.1111/1751-7915.12745. ISSN 1751-7915. PMC 5658581. PMID 28631300.
  5. ^ a b Jugder, Bat-Erdene; Payne, Karl A. P.; Fisher, Karl; Bohl, Susanne; Lebhar, Helene; Manefield, Mike; Lee, Matthew; Leys, David; Marquis, Christopher P. (2018-01-24). "Heterologous Production and Purification of a Functional Chloroform Reductive Dehalogenase". ACS Chemical Biology. 13 (3): 548–552. doi:10.1021/acschembio.7b00846. ISSN 1554-8929. PMID 29363941.
  6. ^ Tang, S.; Edwards, E. A. (2013-03-11). "Identification of Dehalobacter reductive dehalogenases that catalyse dechlorination of chloroform, 1,1,1-trichloroethane and 1,1-dichloroethane". Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 368 (1616): 20120318. doi:10.1098/rstb.2012.0318. ISSN 0962-8436. PMC 3638459. PMID 23479748.
  7. ^ a b Parthasarathy, Anutthaman; Stich, Troy A.; Lohner, Svenja T.; Lesnefsky, Ann; Britt, R. David; Spormann, Alfred M. (2015-03-04). "Biochemical and EPR-Spectroscopic Investigation into Heterologously Expressed Vinyl Chloride Reductive Dehalogenase (VcrA) from Dehalococcoides mccartyi Strain VS". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 137 (10): 3525–3532. doi:10.1021/ja511653d. ISSN 0002-7863. PMC 4516053. PMID 25686300.
  8. ^ Wagner, A. Segler, L. Kleinsteuber, S. Sawers, G. Smidt, H. Lechner, U. (2013). Regulation of reductive dehalogenase gene transcription in Dehalococcoides mccartyi. OCLC 1018969275.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  9. ^ Suyama, A.; Yamashita, M.; Yoshino, S.; Furukawa, K. (2002-07-01). "Molecular Characterization of the PceA Reductive Dehalogenase of Desulfitobacterium sp. Strain Y51". Journal of Bacteriology. 184 (13): 3419–3425. doi:10.1128/jb.184.13.3419-3425.2002. ISSN 0021-9193. PMC 135124. PMID 12057934.
  10. ^ Neumann, Anke; Wohlfarth, Gert; Diekert, Gabriele (1996-07-12). "Purification and Characterization of Tetrachloroethene Reductive Dehalogenase fromDehalospirillum multivorans". Journal of Biological Chemistry. 271 (28): 16515–16519. doi:10.1074/jbc.271.28.16515. ISSN 0021-9258. PMID 8663199.
  11. ^ Ni, S; Fredrickson, J K; Xun, L (1995). "Purification and characterization of a novel 3-chlorobenzoate-reductive dehalogenase from the cytoplasmic membrane of Desulfomonile tiedjei DCB-1". Journal of Bacteriology. 177 (17): 5135–5139. doi:10.1128/jb.177.17.5135-5139.1995. ISSN 0021-9193. PMID 7665493.
  12. ^ Mac Nelly, Anita; Kai, Marco; Svatoš, Aleš; Diekert, Gabriele; Schubert, Torsten (2014-05-09). "Functional Heterologous Production of Reductive Dehalogenases from Desulfitobacterium hafniense Strains". Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 80 (14): 4313–4322. doi:10.1128/aem.00881-14. ISSN 0099-2240. PMC 4068680. PMID 24814779.