Scientists busy studying "oil spill" questions, WLOX, November 4, 2010:
Dr. Grimes is especially interested in a pathogen called "vibrios", the best known of which causes cholera.
But a lesser known vibrios, found in gulf waters, can gobble up oil.
"We can definitely say that at least six of the vibrios that came from the Deepwater Horizon site possess the dioxigenes gene that's necessary to decompose a group of compounds called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are carcinogenic and toxigenic. So, these are the very bad chemicals in crude oil. And they're of great interest to us," said Dr. Grimes.
Darrell Jay Grimes, Ph.D, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory Marine Microbiology Group:
Research in the Marine Microbiology laboratory is primarily focused on the Vibrios. The genus Vibrio now includes over 70 species and is considered by most marine microbiologists to comprise the dominant culturable bacteria in the ocean. Much of the research has focused on V. parahaemolyticus and V. vulnificus [i.e. flesh-eating bacteria] ...