Biodegradation of steroidal pharmaceuticals by environmental bacterial isolates

CHED 508

Kevin E. Shuman, inwardman@comcast.net, Science Department, Wesley College, 120 N. State Street, Dover, DE 19901, Keka C. Biswas, biswaske@wesley.edu, Department of Biology & Environmental Science, Wesley College, 120 N. State Street, Dover, 19901, and Malcolm J. D'Souza, dsouzama@wesley.edu, Department of Chemistry, Wesley College, 120 N State Street, Dover, DE 19901.
Bacteria have the unique capability to use sterols as a carbon source to degrade both the steroid skeleton and the side-chain. Characterization of such bacteria and their extra cellular enzymes has wide ranging applications, especially in studies involving the environmental degradation of veterinary antibiotics and steroidal hormones. The rate of biodegradation of such organic molecules will depend on the proper assessment and development of predictive Quantitative Property Structure Relationship (QSPR) models. Reliable screening tools for predicting the aqueous solubility, partition and distribution coefficients, etc. of potential steroidal containing pharmaceuticals was achieved using the versatile KnowItAll platform (from BioRad Laboratories) and a FDA Consumer Drug Database consisting of 75 structurally different drugs. The initial aim is the characterization and identification of bacteria present in the bedding litter from chicken farms that are capable of degrading manure-derived antibiotics and steroidal estrogenic hormones. The second goal is to evaluate the bacteria's ability to then degrade steroid containing drugs such as Avodart, Inspra, and Aromasin.

We acknowledge a National Science Foundation Grant EPS-0447610, a NIH NCRR INBRE grant 2 P20 RR016472-08, grants from BioRad Laboratories, and the leadership of the Delaware Biotechnology Institute.