Difluoromethane, a new and improved inhibitor of methanotrophy

Applied and Environmental Microbiology
By: , and 



Difluoromethane (HFC-32; DFM) is compared to acetylene and methyl fluoride as an inhibitor of methanotrophy in cultures and soils. DFM was found to be a reversible inhibitor of CH4 oxidation by Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath). Consumption of CH4 in soil was blocked by additions of low levels of DFM (0.03 kPa), and this inhibition was reversed by DFM removal. Although a small quantity of DFM was consumed during these incubations, its remaining concentration was sufficiently elevated to sustain inhibition. Methanogenesis in anaerobic soil slurries, including acetoclastic methanogenesis, was unaffected by levels of DFM which inhibit methanotrophy. Low levels of DFM (0.03 kPa) also inhibited nitrification and N2O production by soils. DFM is proposed as an improved inhibitor of CH4 oxidation over acetylene and/or methyl fluoride on the basis of its reversibility, its efficacy at low concentrations, its lack of inhibition of methanogenesis, and its low cost.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Difluoromethane, a new and improved inhibitor of methanotrophy
Series title Applied and Environmental Microbiology
Volume 64
Issue 11
Year Published 1998
Language English
Publisher ASM
Contributing office(s) Toxic Substances Hydrology Program
Description 6 p.
First page 4357
Last page 4362