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Transferring Plasmid from Aerobic to Anaerobic Bacteria - a thought about the oil eating microbes (OEMs) (May/18/2010 )

This morning in the paper, it was mentioned how the OEMs used to consume the oil from the BP oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico have lowered oxygen levels by approximately 30%. I recently completed AP Biology where we thoroughly discussed the properties of bacteria and the ability to transfer plasmids to other bacteria without a particular trait (the standard fluorescence gene for the lab we did).

When my mom mentioned this, AP Biology oddly came back to my brain. I wondered if it was possible or practical to target the sequence that codes for oil-eating behavior and match it with an anaerobic bacteria where the plasmid could be introduced into its DNA. This way, the oxygen levels wouldn't be affected as much!

I honestly have no idea if this is possible, but would love some feedback!


In theory its possible and they allready use (not there) bacteria to "eat" away "dirt" (oil etc..) ; but this is a very slow proces.

The huge amounts of oil cant be "eaten" away that fast.