Organophosphorus (OP) compounds, which are highly toxic contaminants in agro-environment and food security, have been widely applied to pesticides. Parathion is a typical representative of organophosphorus pesticides. Residues of OP pesticides in food are also often reported.So, this year, our goal is to construct a system that can sense and degrade OP pesticides.

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Our Project

  • OP Degradation

        The bacterial organophosphorus hydrolase enzyme hydrolyzes and detoxifies a broad range of toxic organophosphate pesticides. In the first part, we need to use these enzymes to degrade parathion into PNP.

  • PNP Sensor

        The second part is a biosensor of the hydrolysis product P-Nitrophenol (PNP). There is no operon that can react to parathion. We foucus on constructing a PNP sensor, which can reflect the existence of parathion.

  • PNP Degradation

        We also design a PNP degradation system. We use enzymes NphA1 and NphA2 to degrade PNP, but fail. We find another pathway to degrade PNP in 5 steps with 4 enzymes in Rhodococcus sp. Strain PN1.

  • Suicide System

        With the public increasingly concerned about biosafety, we conceived a suicide gene circuit to ensure these recombinanational bacteria can only survive in laboratories and not cause horizontal gene transfer.