Rhodococcus opacus strain RW, a resorcinol-degrading bacterium from the gut of Macrotermes michaelseni

David Kamanda Ngugi, Muniru Khamis Tsanuo, Hamadi Iddi Boga*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The population of resorcinol degrading bacteria in the intestinal tract of fungi-cultivating termite, Macrotermes michaelseni, was estimated to be 6.8 × 102 cells/ml. A gram-positive bacterium designated RW, capable of degrading resorcinol, was isolated from the highest positive dilution. Isolate RW could also degrade phenol and benzoic acid aerobically, and anaerobically using nitrate as an electron acceptor. The isolate is a rod-shaped bacterium that exhibited evolutionary relatedness with the genus Rhodococcus, as determined by phenotypic traits and physiological tests, and a 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity value of 99.6% to the closest Rhodococcus opacus strain. On the basis of these results isolate RW is proposed as a new strain in the species R. opacus. The ability of the isolate to degrade resorcinol, phenol and benzoic acid makes it a potential candidate for use in bioremediation of environments contaminated by such or related compounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)639-645
Number of pages7
JournalAfrican Journal of Biotechnology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Bioremediation
  • Macrotermes michaelseni
  • Monoaromatic compounds
  • Resorcinol
  • Rhodococcus opacus
  • Termites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology


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